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BR 331 .E5 C5 1869 
Luther, Martin, 1483-1546. 
Watchwords for the warfare 
of life 


" Schonbcrg-Cotta Family ^ 

Chronicles of the Schonberg-Cotta Family. 

The Early Dawn. 

Diary of Kitty Trevylyan. 

Winifred Bertram. 

The Draytons and the Davenants. 

On Both Sides of the Sea. 

Watchwords for the Warfare of Life. 

Mary the Handmaid of the Lord. 
The Song Without Words. 

WATCHWORD ^#'l^Jl2'%x 

* MAY M 1909 • 


Warfare of Life. 



"chronicles of the schonberg-cotta family." 

„Qim I'cbcn ift cine 9fittcrid)aft." 




The New York Printing Company, 
8r, 83, and 85 Ce7itre Sti-eet^ 
New York. 

3n iUcmoriQin. 

GO ex intimo cordc peto mihi et omnibus meis dari simi- 
1cm transitus horam, cum tanta fide, placida quicte, hoc 
est, obdormire in Domiuo, mortem non videre ncquc 
quotaie, neque ullo pilo sentire pavorem. 

An Arnsdorf. Luther's Briefe, v. 502. 

Caro hie nihil habet solatii, ad spiritem eundem est, quod 

felici pereursor nos praecessit ad cum qui nos omnes vocavit * 

* Nos contristatos excipiet ineneurrabiHs Isetitia, ad quam tua 

Ketha et mea IMagdalena cum multis aliis nos prsecesserunt et 

quotidic nos, nt scqiianiur, vocant, f^ortaiitur, alliciiint. 

An Justus Jonas, v. 518. 

FROM my inmost heart crave that to me and all mine 

may be given a like hour of departure, with so great 

=^ faith and such placid calm, that is truly to fall asleep in 

the Lord ; not to see nor to taste death, nor in the least degree 

to feci his terrors. 

We, here, for a little while in sorrow shall at last be received 
into that unutterable joy to which thy Ketha and my Magdalene, 
with many others have gone before us, and to ivhich, eziery day, 
they call, exhort, and tenderly allure us, that we ?nay follow. 

UTHER'S Prose is a half-batllc ; few deeds are 
equal to his words. 

'• Look up to this evergreen Oak and its branches ; 
to this Tower, which, if not always a light-house, was al- 
ways a church-tower with its alarm-bells and its friendly 

" Every brave life appears to us out of the past not so 
brave as it really was, for the forms of terror with which 
it fought are overthrown. Against the many-armed Fu- 
ture threatening from its clouds, only the great soul has 
courage ; every one can be courageous towards the spent- 
out, disclothed Past. Luther stood in the midst of the 
electric tempests which he had enkindled, and for us 
cleared and unfolded them into pure air." 

Jean Paul Friedrich Richter. 

I did greatly long to see some ancient godly man's ex- 
perience who had writ some hundreds of years before I 
was born, for those who had writ in our days, I thought, 


had only writ that which others had felt, or else had 
through the strength of their wits and parts studied to an- 
swer such objections as they perceived others were per- 
plexed with, without going themselves down into the deep. 
Well, after many such longings in my mind, the God in 
whose hands are all our days and ways, did cast into my 
hand one day a book of Martin Luther. It was his Com- 
mentary on the Galatians ; it also was so old that it was 
ready to fall piece from piece, if I did but turn it over. 
Then I was pleased much that such an old book had fallen 
into my hands ; the which, when I had but a little way 
perused, I found my condition, in his experience, so large- 
ly and profoundly handled, as if this book had been writ- 
ten out of my heart. This made me marvel ; for this man, 
I thought, could not know anything of the state of 
Christians now, but must thus write of the experience of 
former days. This, therefore, I must let fall before all 
men, I do prefer this book of Martin Luther on the Gala- 
tians, excepting the Holy Bible, before all the books that 
ever I have seen as most fit for a wounded conscience. 

John Bunyan. 


HE seledlions in this volume have 
all been freshly translated from 
Luther's own German or Latin, 
with the exception of the extrafts taken 
from the sixteenth century translation of 
the Commentary on the Galatians. 

The majority of the extrafts are from 
the Letters and the Tischreden. 



IJavt 1. 



The Commander 17 


Rules of the Service 42 

The Weapons of our Warfare 55 


The Armies of Heaven 100 

The Enemy no 


Part 2. 


The Leader 155 

Special Graces 165 

|Javt 3* 


The Visible Creation 191 

The Holy Scriptures 205 

The Fathers and Doctors of the Church 220 

Heroes 223 

Children 229 

Music 236 


Part 4. 


Trial of Various Kinds 243 

Sickness 255 

Bereavement 266 

Part i5. 


The Last Conflict 295 

The Present Life of the Just in Heaven 306 

The Resurrection and the Glorious Advent. . .315 

^art JFust. 





We must strive, for we are under one Lord of armies and Prince of war- 
riors. Therefore, with one hand we must build, and in tlie other bear the 

It must not be " Sic eg-o Pkilippus.^'' The " ego " is too small. The word is, 
" / am that I am. 

i'OVE is an image of God, and not a 
lifeless image, nor one painted on 
paper, but the living essence of the 
Divine Nature, which beams full of 
all goodness. 

He is not harsh, as we are to those who have 
injured us. We withdraw our hand and close 
our purse ; but He is kind to the unthankful 
and the evil. 

He sees thee in thy poverty and wretchedness, 
and knows thou hast nothing to pay ; therefore 
He freely forgives and gives thee all. 


"/^^^ OD'S love gives in such a way, that it flows 
VJT from a Father's heart, the well-spring of 
all good. The heart of the giver makes the 
gift dear and precious ; as among ourselves we 
say of even a trifling gift, * It comes from a hand 
we love,' and look not so much at the gift as at 
the heart." 

" T F we will only consider Him in His works, 
-L we shall learn that God is nothing else but 
pure, unutterable love, greater and more than 
any one can think. The shameful thing is, that 
the world does not regard this, nor thank Him 
for it, although every day it sees before it such 
countless benefits from Him ; and it deserves for 
its ingratitude that the sun should not shine 
another moment longer, nor the grass grow ; yet 
He ceases not, for one moment's interval, to love 
us and to do us good. Language must fail me 
to speak of His spiritual gifts. Here He pours 
forth for us, not sun and moon, nor heaven and 
earth, but His own heart. His beloved Son, so 
that He suffered His blood to be shed, and the 
most shameful death to be infli6led on Him, for 
us wretched, wicked, thankless creatures. How, 
then, can we say anything but that God is an 
abyss of endless, unfathomable love .'' " 

"npHE whole Bible is full of this — that we 

J- should not doubt, but be absolutely 

certain, that God is merciful, gracious, patient, 


fciithful, and true ; who not only will keep His 
promises, but already has kept and done abun- 
dantly beyond what He promised, since He has 
given His own Son for our sins on the cross, 
that all who believe on Him should not perish, 
but have everlasting life." 

"TXT'HOEVER believes, and embraces this, 
V V that God has given His only Son to 
die for us poor sinners, to him it is no longer 
any doubt, but the most certain truth, that God 
reconciles us to Himself, and is favorable and 
heartily gracious to us." 

''OINCE the gospel shows us Christ the Son 
»0 of God, who, according to the will of the 
Father, has offered Himself for us, and has satis- 
fied for sin, the heart can no more doubt God's 
goodness and grace — is no more affrighted, nor 
flies from God, but sets all its hope in His good- 
ness and mercy." 

THE apostles are always exhorting us to 
continue in the love of God — that is, that 
each one should entirely conclude in his heart 
that he is loved by God ; and they set before our 
eyes a certain proof of it, in that God has not 
spared His Son, but given Him for the world, 
that through His death the world might again 
have life. 

It is God's honor and glory to give liberally. 


His nature is all pure love, so that if any one 
would describe or pi6lure God, he must describe 
One who is pure love, the Divine Nature being 
nothing else than a furnace and glow of such 
love that it fills heaven and earth. 

T is not to be borne that Christian people 
should say. We cannot know whether God 
is favorable to us or not. On the contrary, we 
should learn to say, I know that I believe in 
Christ, and therefore that God is my gracious 

WHAT is the reason that God gives t What 
moves Him to it } Nothing but unuttera- 
ble love, because He delights to give and to bless. 
What does He give t Not empires merely, not a 
world full of silver and gold, not heaven and earth 
only ; but His Son, who is as great as Himself 
• — that is, eternal and incomprehensible, a Gift as 
infinite as the Giver, the very spring and fountain 
of all grace ; yea, the possession and property of 
all the riches and treasures of God. 


C"^ OD is limited to no place. He is also ex- 
T eluded from none. He is in all places, 
and in the least of His creatures, in the petal of 
the flower, in a blade of grass ; and yet He is in 
net place. Nowhere, comprehensively and exclu- 


sively ; everywhere, because everywhere He is 
creating and upholding everything. 

The Creation not Left to Itself. 

GOD has not so created the creatures that 
after creating He abandons them. He 
loves them, dehghts in them, is with them ; 
moves and sustains each creature accordinir to 
its kind. 

We Christians know that with God creatins: 
and sustaining are one thing. 

The Creator, 

TO Magister Holflein, Doctor Martin Luther 
said, *' Dear Master, where were you, sixty 
years ago t Where was I } Whence came I 
hither } Whence came you hither } We did not 
create ourselves, and yet, now, we want to go to 
our Lord God and bargain with Him, and sell 
Him our works ! He must, forsooth, give us His 
heaven for them ! Ls not this a shameful thing, 
that a creature should lift itself up thus and de- 
sire to traffic with its Creator.'* 

" We do not really believe that God is our 
Creator. If we believed it, we should a(5l far 
otherwise. But no one believes that God is the 
Creator. Even when we say it, and our con- 
science convinces us, it is not genuine earnest 
with us. 

" We virtually go up to God and say, ' Lord 


God, look on me for my works' sake ! I come to 
Thee. Thou hast not created me.' Shame on us." 

The Living God, 

THE chief thing that God requireth of man 
is that he giveth unto Him the glory of 
His Divinity — that is to say, that he taketh Him 
not for an idol, but for God, who looketh on him, 
listeneth to him, showeth mercy on him, and 

" True Christian Divinity^ 

TRUE Christian Divinity setteth not God 
forth unto us in His Majesty. It com- 
mandeth us not to search out the nature of God, 
but to know His will set forth to us in Christ. 

Therefore begin thou where Christ began — 
namely, in the womb of the Virgin, in the man- 
ger, and at His mother's breast. It is to this 
end He came down, was born, was conversant 
among men ; suffered, was crucified and died, 
that by all means He might set Himself forth 
plainly before us, and fasten the eyes of our heart 
upon Himself, that He might thereby keep us 
from climbing up into heaven, and from the curi- 
ous searching of the Divine Majesty. 

Christ Revealing the Father. 

CHRIST, according to His of^ce, calleth us 
back unto the Father's will, that in His 


words and works we should not so much look on 
Him, but on the Father. For Christ came into 
this world, and took man's nature on Him, that 
He might be a sacrifice for the sins of the whole 
world, and so reconcile us to God the Father ; 
that He alone might declare unto us how this 
was done through the good pleasure of the 
Father, that we, by fastening our eyes on Christ, 
might be drawn and carried straight unto the 

Theology Begin7iing at Bethlehem. 

CHRISTIAN religion beginneth not at the 
highest, as other religions do, but at the 
lowest. It will have us to climb up by Jacob's 
ladder, whereupon God Himself leaneth, whose 
feet touch the very earth, hard by the head of 

Run straight to the manger, and embrace this 
infant, the Virgin's little babe, in thine arms ; 
and behold Him as He was born, nursed, grew 
up, was conversant amongst men ; teaching ; 
dying ; rising again ; ascending up above all the 
heavens, and having power over all things. 

This sight and contemplation will keep thee 
in the right way, that thou mayest follow whither 
Christ hath gone. 

God Stoopi7ig to Man. 

THE Gospel is the Revelation of the Son of 


With our reason we can never comprehend 
what God the Creator is. And for this cause He 
has taught, " It is in vain ; human reason cannot 
comprehend Me. I am too great and too high. 
I will make Myself little, that man may under- 
stand Me ; I will give him My Son, and so give 
Him, that for man He shall become a sacrifice, 
sin and a curse, and be obedient to Me the 
Father, even to the death of the cross." 

This is indeed to become little and compre- 
hensible. But who believes it t Novem tibi 
sunt ? " Where are the nine ^ " 

The Incarnation. 

N deep spiritual temptations nothing has 
helped me better, with nothing have I heart- 
ened myself and driven away the devil better 
than with this, that Christ, the true Eternal Son 
of God, is " bone of our bone, and flesh of our 
flesh," and that he sits on the right hand of God, 
and pleads for us. When I can grasp this shield 
of faith, I have already chased away the evil one 
with his fiery darts. 

ANNO Domini 15 38, on the 25th of December, 
on Christmas Day, Doctor Martin Luther 
was very joyous, and all his sayings, songs, and 
thoughts were about the Incarnation of Christ 
our Saviour. And he said, with a deep sigh, — 

"Ah, we poor human creatures, how coldly 
and tamely we greet this great joy which has 


come to bless us ! This is the great a6l of ben- 
eficence which far excels all other works of crea- 
tion. And shall we so feebly believe it, when it 
has been announced to us, preached, and sung 
by the angels ? (heavenly theologians and preach- 
ers, indeed !) And they have rejoiced on our 
account, and their song is verily a glorious song, 
wherein is briefly enfolded the sum of the whole 
Christian religion. For the Gloria in excelsis 
Deo, ' Glory to God in the highest,' is the high- 
est worship, and this they bring to us in this 

" For the world since Adam's fall knows 
neither God nor His creatures ; lives without 
regarding God's glory ; praises, honors, glori- 
fies Him not. Oh, what choice, joyous thoughts 
man would have had ; seeing even in the low- 
liest flowers that our Lord God is an Artist and 
Master whom none can imitate ! 

" Wherefore the dear angels call us, fallen 
creatures, to faith in Christ, and to love ; that 
we, giving glory to God alone, may have peace 
in this life, both with God and with one an- 

THE Feast of the Annunciation may well be 
called the Feast of the Incarnation. Then 
our Redemption began. Thus the French and 
the English date the beginning of the year from 
this Feast. For this mystery no one can explain, 
nor fathom with his reason, that God, the High- 


est Majesty, has humbled Himself to take on 
Him our flesh. 

On this day we preachers should diligently 
pi6ture to the people the History of the Festival, 
as Luke describes it, circumstantially and in 
order ; and we should, all together, have joy and 
delight in the comforting, blessed story that, as 
on this day, Christ our Lord and Saviour, con- 
ceived by the Holy Ghost, took our human na- 
ture upon Him, of the pure chaste Virgin Mary ; 
became our Brother ; lifted up our condemned 
and corrupted humanity to this highest glory, 
that we should be children of God, and His 
fellow-heirs, at which, indeed, we should rejoice 
more than over all the treasures of this earth. 

It is true we cannot enough praise Mary, that 
high, noble creature ; but when the Creator Him- 
self comes and gives Himself for us, to redeem 
us from the power of the devil, for this Inexpres- 
sible grace, neither we nor the angels can praise 
and bless Him enough to eternity. 

The Childhood mid Youth of our Lord. 

ALL the wisdom of the world is mere child's 
play, yes, folly, compared with the knowl- 
edge of Christ. For what is more wonderful 
than to know and acknowledge the great, unspeak- 
able mystery that the Son of God, the express 
Image of the Eternal Father, has taken our na- 
ture on Him, and become in fashion as a man } 
At Nazareth He must have helped His father 


build houses ; for Joseph was a carpenter. 
Therefore Christ was called " the carpenter's 
son ;" yes, Himself " the carpenter." 

What will the people of Nazareth think at the 
Last Day, when they shall see Christ sitting in 
Divine Majesty, and may say to Him, " Lord, didst 
Thou not help build my house } How then 
comest Thou to this high glory 1 " 

Many fables have been imaged, by many, of 
what Jesus did in His childhood and youth, as 
can be seen in the book with the title, " De Tn- 
fanti a Salvatorisl' and ''De Vita yesu!' But be- 
cause in this book stands many a foolish, ridicu- 
lous thing, it has never been esteemed by 

This, however, is the needful thing, that we 
Christians should with all diligence learn and 
know that the Son of God did so deeply humble 
Himself, was born so poor and in such a low 
estate, all on account of our sins ; and that for 
our sakes He hid His Majesty so long. 

When He was born, He wept and wailed like 
another babe. Mary had to wait on Him and 
tend Him, and feed Him at her breast (as the 
Church sings, " A little milk was once His 
food "), to cherish, clothe, lift, and carry Him, 
lay Him to rest, as any other mother her babe. 

Soon afterwards Joseph, with the mother and 
the babe, in distress, had to flee into Egypt, from 

When, after Herod's death, they came back to 


Nazareth, He was subje6l to His parents, and no 
doubt often brought them bread, drink, and other 
things. Mary may have said to Him, "Jesus, 
where hast Thou been ? Canst Thou not stay 
at home ! " And when He grew up, He must 
have helped Joseph at the carpentering, &c. 
Not to stumble nor to be offended at this feeble, 
lowly form, this despised mode of life, which 
was seen in Christ, is great, high art and wis- 
dom, yea, God's gift, and the Holy Ghost's own 

Some are offended because we sometimes say 
in the pulpit that Christ was a carpenter (Zim- 
mergesell). But it is a far greater offence that 
He was nailed to the cross, as one guilty of 
blasphemy and insurre6tion, between two male- 

IT is written that there was once a pious godly 
bishop who had often earnestly prayed that 
God would manifest to him what Jesus had done 
in his youth. Once the bishop had a dream to 
this effe6l. He seemed, in his sleep, to see a car- 
penter working at his trade, and beside him a 
little boy, who was gathering up chips. Then came 
in a maiden, clothed in green, who called them 
both to come to the meal, and set porridge (Brei) 
before them. All this the bishop seemed to see 
in his dream, himself standing behind the door 
that he might not be perceived. Then the little 
boy began and said, " Why does that man stand 


there ? Shall not he also eat with us ? " And 
this so frightened the bishop that he awoke. 

Let this be what it may, a true history or a fa- 
ble, I none the less believe that Christ in His child- 
hood and youth looked and a6led like other 
children, " yet without sin," " in fashion like a 

Often (so I think, I assert it not for truth), 
when His parents had need, by His Divine 
power He may have created and brought them 
what they needed, without money. For when 
His mother saw at the marriage-feast at Cana 
that they wanted wine, from her motherly heart 
she said to Him with confidence, *' They have no 
wine," as if often before she had seen how He 
could help in need. 

Whosoever, therefore, will rightly comprehend 
this child, must think that there is no higher 
wisdom than to acknowledge Christ, and not to 
be offended or turned aside, because the world 
holds all this for the greatest foolishness. For 
to us w^ho believe it is the " wisdom of God and 
the power of God " whereby we are saved, and 
wherein the dear angels have delight and joy. 

Therefore it pleases me very well, when in the 
churches they sing aloud, and with a solemn 
slowness, Et homo factus est and Vei'buni euro 
factiLin est. To these words the devil cannot 
listen, but must flee many miles from them, for 
he feels well what there is in them. 

If we rejoiced from our hearts over those 


words, as the devil trembles at them, it would be 
well for us. 

Christ at the yiidgniejit-Seat. 

IS it not a wonderful thing that the Son of 
God should sit there and suffer himself to 
be so piteously tormented, scorned, and mocked ? 
— He whom all angels adore, before whom the 
earth trembles ? — Whom all the creatures ac- 
knowledge as their Creator, in His face they spit, 
strike Him on the lips with a reed, say in mock- 
ery, " Ah, if He is a king He must have a crown 
and sceptre ! " 

Oh, our sufferings are nothing ! When I 
think of them, I am ashamed to death. Yet we 
are to be conformed to the image of the Son of 
God ; and if our sufferings could be as great as 
His, it would still be nothing in comparison. 
For He is the Son of God, and we are poor 
creatures. If we suffered eternal death, it were 
nothing in comi:)arison. 

The Last Stipper, 

THE supper which Christ held with His 
disciples when He gave them His fare- 
well must have been full of friendly heart-inter- 
course ; for Christ spoke just as tenderly and 
cordially to them as a father to his dear little 
children when he is obliged to part from them. 
He made the best of their infirmities, and had 


patience with them, although all the while they 
were so slow to understand, and still lisped like 

Yet that must indeed have been choice, 
friendly, and delightful converse when Philip 
said, " Show us the Father ; " and Thomas, " We 
know not the way ; " and Peter, " I will go with 
Thee to prison and to death." 

It was simple, quiet table-talk ; every one 
opening his heart and showing his thoughts 
freely and fearlessly, and without restraint. 

Never since the world began was there a more 
delightful meal than that. 

The Ag07iy in the Garde7i. 

DR. LUTHER was once questioned at table 
concerning the " bloody sweat," and the 
other deep spiritual sufferings which Christ en- 
dured in the garden. Then he said — '' No man 
can know or conceive what that anguish must 
have been. If any man began even to experi- 
ence such suffering, he must die. You know 
many do die of sickness of heart ; for heart- 
anguish is indeed death. If a man could feel 
such anguish and distress as Christ felt, it would 
be impossible for him to endure it and for his 
soul to remain in his body. Soul and body would 
part. To Christ alone was this agony possible, 
and it wrung from Him ' sweat which was as 
great drops of blood.' " 


The Ascension of Christ. 

A WONDERFUL thing it must have been 
to see, when Christ vanished before the 
disciples' eyes, and went up into heaven. The 
good disciples must have thought, "We have 
eaten and drunk with Him, and now, whilst look- 
ing at us, He is taken from us into heaven." 

I know Dr. Justus Jonas very intimately, and 
if he were now raised up into heaven, and were 
to vanish before our eyes, it would give us many 
strange and wonderful thoughts. 

" IV^T O man kath ascended into heaven save He 
1 ^ who came dozvn from heaven, even the 
Son of Man, who is in heaven!' 

In these three sayings are briefly compre- 
hended His almightiness. " To come down from 
heaven," means that He appeared on earth, be- 
came man (in all things like us, save in sin), let 
His glory be seen in his words and wondrous 
works, and at last accomplished the redemption 
of the human race. 

"To ascend to heaven," means that hence- 
forth He appears no more on earth in bodily 

" Is in heaven," means that in His Godhead 
He has never left the right hand of the Father, 
and moreover that He has never relinquished, 
and will never relinquish, the human nature 
which He has taken on Him. 


The Holy Spirit. 

ON the Day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit 
began the New Testament. Then He 
openly established his office and work, as Christ 
proclaimed Him, " the Comforter, and the Spirit 
of Truth." 

For He gave to the apostles and disciples a 
true, sure consolation in their hearts, and an 
assured, joyful mind, so that they did not ask if 
the world and the devil were favorable or unfa- 
vorable, raged or laughed, but went through the 
streets of the city, and thought, " Here neither 
Annas, Caiaphas, Pilate, or Herod are anything. 
We Christians are all. All are our subje61s and 
servants, and we their lords and rulers." 

That these poor beggars and fishermen, the 
apostles, should step forth and preach as they did, 
enraging the whole government at Jerusalem, 
bringing on themselves the wrath of the priests 
also, and of the whole Roman empire, opening 
their mouths and crying, " Ye are traitors and 
murderers," knowing that they would in conse- 
quence be smitten on the mouth ; all this could 
not have been but through the Holy Spirit. 

THE Holy Ghost is called the Comforter, not 
one who makes sad ; for where melancholy 
and depression are, there the Holy Ghost, the 
Comforter, is not at home. The devil is a spirit 



of terror and sadness. But the Holy Ghost is 
the Comforter. 

THE Holy Ghost, who is called a Witness 
and a Comforter, preaches and testifies 
throughout Christendom, to comfort and streng- 
then all the sorrowful, of none save only of 

THE Holy Scriptures give to the Holy Spirit 
a very choice name, calling Him an Ad- 
vocate, Paraclete, who condu6ls our cause and 
does the best for us, speaks for us, makes inter- 
cession for us, and helps us up again when we are 
fallen. Thus we obtain the vi6tory through faith, 
and overcome the devil and the world, not by our 
own means and powers, but by the power and 
working of the Holy Spirit and of faith. 

The Love of God. 

THE slender capacity of man's heart cannot 
comprehend, much less utter, that un- 
searchable depth and burning zeal of God's love 
towards us. 

God is gracious and merciful, as the Scriptures 
show. He loves even real sinners (bosen Buben). 
Yea, to the blind, hard world which lieth in the 
wicked one, He has sent as a Saviour His own Son. 
I could not have done that, and yet I am a real sin- 
ner (bose Bubc) myself. 


" True Definition of Christy 

FOR, indeed, Christ is no cruel exa6tor, but 
a forgiver of the sins of the whole world. 
Wherefore, if thou be a sinner (as indeed are we 
all), set not Christ down upon the rainbow as a 
judge, but take hold of His true definition — name- 
ly, that Christ the Son of God and of the Virgin 
is a Person not that terrifieth, not that affli^leth, 
not that condemneth us of sin, not that demand- 
eth an account of us for our life of evil passed, 
but hath given Himself for our sins, and with 
one oblation hath put away the sins of the whole 
world, hath fastened them upon the cross, and 
put them clean out by Himself. 

CHRIST, then, is no Moses, no exa6lor, no 
giver of laws, but a giver of grace ; a Sa- 
viour, and one that is full of mercy. Briefly, He is 
nothing else but infinite mercy and goodness, 
freely given, and bountifully giving unto us. 

Now, as it is the greatest knowledge and cun- 
ning that Christians can have thus to define Christ, 
so of all things it is the hardest. 

I speak not this without cause, for I know 
what moveth me to be so earnest that we should 
learn to define Christ out of the words of Paul. 

Ye young men, therefore, are in this case much 
more happy than we that are old. For ye are 
not infected with these pernicious errors where- 


in I have been so nustled * and drowned from 
my youth, that at the very hearing of the name 
of Christ my heart hath trembled and quaked for 

Christ, when He cometh, is nothing else but 
joy and sweetness to a trembling, broken heart, as 
Paul here witnesseth, who setteth Him out with 
this most sweet and comfortable title when he 
saith, " Which loved me and gave Himself for me!' 
Christ, therefore, in very deed is a lover of those 
which are in trouble and anguish, in sin and 
death, and such a lover as gave Himself for us, 
who is also our High Priest. 

He saith not, " Which hath received our works 
at our hands," nor " Which hath received the 
sacrifices of Moses' law, worshippings, religions, 
masses, vows and pilgrimages ; " but hath ^' given." 
What } Not gold nor silver, nor beasts, nor pas- 
chal lambs, nor an angel, but Himself For what } 
Not for a crown, not for a kingdom, not for our 
holiness and righteousness, but for our sins. 
Not for feigned or counterfeit sins, nor yet for 
small sins, nor for vanquished sins, but for great 
and huge sins ; not for one or two, but for all. 

Christ the Centre, 
T N my heart," he said, " this article reigns 
X alone, and shall reign — namely, faith in 

* Sixteenth century translation of the Commentary on the Ga- 
latians, probably the very same of which John Bunyan found the 
well-worn copy, which seemed " as if it had been written out of 
his heart." 


my dear Lord Christ, who is the only Beginning, 
Middle, and End of all my spiritual and divine 
thoughts which I have by day or night." 

Yet at the same time I feel that I only attain to 
a little feeble lifting up before others of the height, 
depth, and breadth, of this immeasurable and 
endless wisdom, and have scarcely been able to 
bring to light more than a few little fragments and 
broken pieces from this most rich and precious 

Christ the Priest. 

ONCE, when his servant read in the Psalms 
the verse, " / have szvorn and will not re- 
pe7ity Thou art a Priest for everl' Doctor Mar- 
tin said, " That is the most beautiful and glorious 
verse in the whole Psalter ; for herein God holds 
forth this Christ alone as our Bishop and High 
Priest, who Himself and no other, without ceas- 
ing, makes intercession for His own with the 
Father. Not Caiaphas, nor Annas, nor Peter, 
nor Paul, nor the Pope ; He, He alone shall be 
the Priest. This I affirm with an oath." 

" TJioiL art a Priest for ever!' In that saying 
every syllable is greater than the whole Tower 
of Babel. 

To this Priest let us cling and cleave. For 
He is faithful ; He has given Himself for us to 
God, and holds us dearer than His own life. 

When we stand firm to Christ, there is no 
other god in heaven or on earth but One who 


makes just and blessed. On the other hand, 
if we lose Him from our heart and eyes, there 
is no other help, comfort, or rest. 

Christ our Sacrifice, 

IN His death He is a Sacrifice, satisfying for 
our sins ; in the resurrection, a Conqueror ; 
in the ascension, a King ; in the intercession, a 
High Priest. 

Christ made One with Man. 

GOD sent His only Son into the world, and 
laid upon Him the sins of all men, saying, 
" Be Thou Peter, that denier ; Paul, that perse- 
cutor, blasphemer, and cruel oppressor ; David, 
that adulterer ; that sinner which did eat the 
apple in Paradise ; that thief which hanged upon 
the cross ; and briefly, be Thou the person which 
hath committed the sins of all men." 

Christ Obedient to the Laiv, 

CHRIST is not a Teacher of the law, like 
Moses, but a disciple who would be obe- 
dient to the law, that through such subje6lion 
and obedience He might redeem those who were 
under the law. 

Christ Conquering by Suffering, 

CHRIST is made the law of the law, the sin 
of sin, the death of death, that He might 


redeem from the curse of the law, justify me 
and quicken me. While He is the law, He is 
also liberty ; while He is sin, He is righteous- 
ness ; while He is death, He is life. For in that 
He suffered the law to accuse Him, sin to con- 
demn Him, and death to devour Him, He abol- 
ished the law. He condemned sin. He destroyed 
death. He justified and saved me. 

Christ our Life. 

THIS life that I have now in the flesh, in very 
deed is no true life, but a shadow of life, 
under which another liveth ; that is to say, 
Christ. Who is my true life, indeed ; which life 
thou seest not, but only hearest, and I feel. 

Christ Cleansing Us. 

AS if He would say (in washing the disciples* 
feet), I am the true Laver and Bath. 
Therefore, if I wash thee not, thou remainest 
unclean, and dead in thy sins. 

Christ the Conqueror of Sin^ Death, and the 


NOT only my sins and thine, but the sins 
of the whole world, either past, present, 
or to come, take hold of Him, go about to con- 
demn Him, and do indeed condemn Him. 

But because in the self-same Person — which 


is thus the highest, the greatest, and the only 
sinner — there is also an everlasting and invin- 
cible righteousness, therefore these two do en- 
counter together ; the highest, the greatest, and 
the only sin ; and the highest, the greatest, and 
the only righteousness. 

Sin is a mighty and cruel tyrant, ruling and 
reigning over the whole world, bringing all men 
into bondage. This tyrant flieth upon Christ, 
and will needs swallow Him up, as he doth all 
other. But he seeth not that He is a person of 
invincible and everlasting righteousness. In 
this combat what is done 1 Righteousness is 
everlasting, immortal, invincible. 

In like manner, Death, which is an invincible 
queen and empress of the whole world, killing 
kings, princes, and, generally, all men, doth 
mightily encounter with Life, thinking utterly to 
overcome it ; and that which it undertaketh, it 
bringeth to pass indeed. But because Life was 
immortal, therefore, when it was overcome, yet 
did it truly overcome, and get the victory, van- 
quishing and killing death. Death, therefore, 
through Christ is vanquished and abolished 
throughout the whole world ; so that now it is 
but a painted death, which, losing its sting, can 
no more hurt those that believe in Christ, who 
is become the death of death. 

So, the curse fighteth against the blessing, 
and would condemn it and bring it to naught ; 
but it cannot do so. For the blessing is divine. 


everlasting, and therefore the curse must needs 
give place. For if the blessing in Christ could 
be overcome, then should God Himself also be 

The Name of Jesjis. 

IF God takes me this hour, or to-morrow, out 
of this life, I will leave it behind me, that 
I confess Jesus Christ to be my God and Lord. 
This I have learned, not from the Scriptures 
only, but in many great and hard experiences. 
I have resisted well-nigh unto blood, and en- 
dured many a sore conflicl on this account ; but 
it has been very good and profitable for me. 

The Gospel in the Crucifix. 

I BELIEVE that many have been saved 
under the Papacy, although they never 
heard the gospel as now, thank God, it is 
preached and taught, to whom, as they were in 
the agony of death, and about to depart, the 
crucifix was held up, and it was said, " Fix thy 
hope on Him who hath redeemed thee." 



Obedie7ice a Glorious Apparel. 

\ER clothing is all glorious within. 
What kind of glorious apparel is 
this ? For we know that on earth 
Christians are poor and little es- 
teemed. It is a spiritual adorning ; not gold, 
silver, pearls, velvet, but obedience to the Lord 
our God. This apparel is brighter than the sun, 
for these are God's jewels. He who goes about 
doing God's will, goes about clothed in God's 
beauty. To serve Him truly, is simply to abide 
in our calling, be it lowly as it may. 

WHEN one asked what was the best service 
of God, which pleased Him best .? Doc- 
tor Martin said, " To hear Christ and be obedi- 


ent to Him." This is the highest and greatest 
service of God. Besides this, all is worth no- 
thing. For in heaven He has far better and 
more beautiful worship and service than we can 
render. As it was said to Saul, " To obey is bet- 
ter than to sacrificed As also soldiers say in time 
of war ; obedience and keeping to the articles 
of war — this is vi6lory. 

EVEN in philosophy men are constrained not 
to look on the bare work, but on the good- 
will of the worker. Wherefore we must ascend 
up higher in divinit}^ with this word " doing " than 
in natural things and philosophy, so that now it 
must have a new signification, and be made alto- 
gether new. 

TRUE obedience to God is the obedience of 
faith and good works ; that is, he is truly 
obedient to God who trusts Him and does what 
He commands. 

CHRISTIANS have to do with two kinds of 
business ; the Word and the works of God. 

IN all works we should look to God's Word. 
Such works as are done at God's command, 
these are not from our self-will ; but we are God's 
tools and instruments, through which He works ; 
they are not our own works, but God's. But all 
works which are not done at God's command 


are godless and condemned, being mere works 
of our own hands. 

THE true doer of the law is he who, receiving 
the Holy Ghost through faith in Christ, 
beginneth to love God and to do good to his 
nei2:hbor. The tree must be first, and then the 

TO worship God in spirit, is the service and 
homage of the heart, and implies fear of 
God and trust in Him. 

ALL Christians constitute the spiritual estate ; 
and the only difference among them is 
that of the fundlions which they discharge. 


The Law and the Gospel. 

HE law discovers the disease. The gospel 
gives the remedy. 

THE law is what we must do ; the gospel what 
God will give. 

THE gospel is like a fresh, soft, cool breeze in 
the i^reat heat of summer, a comfort in 
anguish of conscience ; not in winter, when there 
is already cold enough (that is in time of peace, 
when people are secure) ; but in the great heat 
of summer— that is, in those who truly feel ter- 


ror and anguish of conscience, and God's anger 
against them. 

THIS heat is caused by the sun. So must this 
terror of conscience be caused by the preach- 
ing of the law. Then must the heavenly breeze 
again quicken and refresh the conscience. 

BUT when the powers are thus again quick- 
ened by the sweet wind of the gospel, we 
must not lie idly basking, we must show our faith 
by good works. 

LIKE as the parched earth coveteth the rain, 
the law maketh parched and troubled souls 
to thirst after Christ. 

THE law is a light which enlightens us not to 
see God's grace nor righteousness, through 
which we attain to eternal life, but sin, our infir- 
mities, death, God's anger, and judgment. 

THE gospel is a far different light. It lights up 
the troubled heart, makes it live again, 
comforts and helps. For it shows how God for- 
gives unworthy, condemned sinners for Christ's 
sake, when they believe that they are redeemed 
by His death ; and that through His vi61ory are 
given to them all blessings, grace, forgiveness of 
sins, righteousness, and eternal life. 


The Law a Fire. 

THE law is that hammer, that fire, that mighty 
and strong wind, and that terrible earth- 
quake, rending the mountains and shivering the 
rocks. But it behooved that the tempest, the fire, 
the wind, the earthquake, should pass, before 
the Lord should reveal Himself in the still 
small voice. 

The Law a Prison. 

THE law is a prison, both civilly and spirit- 
ually. For, first, it restraineth and shut- 
teth up the wicked ; furthermore, by revealing 
sin, it shutteth man up in a prison, out of which 
he cannot escape. 

The Law a Schoolmaster. 

THE law is not barely a schoolmaster, but a 
schoolmaster to bring us to Christ. For 
what a schoolmaster were he which should alway 
torment and beat the child, and teach him no- 
thing at all t And yet such schoolmasters there 
were in times past, when schools were nothing 
else but a prison and a very hell ; the school- 
masters cruel tyrants and very butchers ; the 
children were always beaten ; they learned with 
continual pain and travail, and yet few of them 
came to any proof The law is not such a 
schoolmaster. For it doth not only terrify and 


torment. It instru6leth, and exerciseth, and with 
its rods driveth us to Christ. 

" T F Moses comes to judge me," said Doctor 
J. Martin, " I will motion him away, in God's 
name, and say, ' Here stands Christ.' And at the 
Last Day, Moses will look on me and say, * Thou 
hast understood me aright.' And he will be 
gracious to me." 

The Law a Wall of Defence. 

BY the Ten Commandments the Lord hath 
defended and fortified the life of man, his 
wife and children, and his goods, as it were with 
a wall, against the force and violence of the 

The Decalogue to be taught Affirmatively, 

THE Decalogue (that, is the Ten Command- 
ments of God) is amirror and brief sum- 
mary of all virtues, and teaches how we should 
condu6l ourselves towards God and towards man. 
And no more beautiful, perfe6t, and shorter book 
of virtues was ever written. 

The virtue of the First Commandment is god- 
liness ; that is, to fear, love, and trust God. 

Of the Second, to confess and preach the doc- 
trine of God's word. 

Of the Third, public worship of God. 

Of the Fourth, obedience to parents, precep- 


tors, and rulers in that which is not contrary to 

Of the Fifth, gentleness, not to be revengeful. 

Of the Sixth, chastity and sobriety. 

Of the Seventh, to do good, willingly give and 
lend, and be generous. 

Of the Eighth, truth, to injure no one's good 
name, to speak good of each other. 

Of the Ninth, justice, to let each enjoy his own. 

Of the Tenth, to be without evil desires in the 
heart, and to be content with our own. 

The Ten Commandments are to be understood 
and explained as not only forbidding, but bidding. 
" The chief commandment is love from a pure 
heart, and a good conscience, and faith unfeigned." 

THAT word, "Thou shalt have none other Gods 
but Mel' once seemed to me useless and 
superfluous under the gospel. When I read it 
first, I thought, " Ah, who does not know that .'' " 
But now, thank God, I see what the words mean ; 
indeed, they are more wonderful than any man 
can explain or comprehend. 

Short Sayings about the Catechism as Dr. 
Martin Luther taught it at Home- 


AS faith is, so is God. 
God does not remain outside, although 
He delays. 


Idolatry is essentially darkness of heart. 

God gives through creatures. 

Unthankfulness is theft 

No one should be judged in his absence. 

Interpret all for the best. 

No good work goes beyond the Ten Com- 

To fear and trust God is fulfilling all the Com- 

The First Commandment includes all the rest. 



OD o:ives Himself to us with all the crea- 


The Holy Spirit brings Christ home to us. 

Where the Holy Spirit does not preach, there 
is no church. 

The work of the Holy Spirit is going forward 


THE good works of Christians are to benefit 
and help our neighbors. 
In tribulations we should be manly and of a 
good heart. 

Our whole life should be manly, fearing and 
trusting God. 

Faith makes us the inheritance of Christ. 

The gospel is pure joy. 

The person must be good before his works. 



A Christian life consists in three things — in 
faith, love, and the cross.* 

A clergyman is like the director of a hos- 

God's gifts which we possess, we should es- 
teem highly ; ourselves humbly. 

THE Decalogue is a doctrine beyond all 
doctrines. The Apostles' Creed is virtue 
beyond all virtues. The Lord's Prayer is a 
prayer beyond all prayers and Litanies ; more- 
over, it is a joy above all joys. For as the Ten 
Commandments teach and exhort all in the freest 
and fullest way, so the Creed fulfils the same in 
the most thorough way, and the Lord's Prayer 
asks and entreats all in the most Christian and 
certain way. Therefore this threefold cord makes 
a man perfe6l in thought, speech, and work, 
ordering and educating his heart, mind, tongue, 
and body to the highest perfe6lion. 

The Decalogue based on Redemption. 

THUS saith God, ^^ I am the Lord thy God, 
who led thee out of the lajtd of Egypt. " Be- 
cause God can only be known through His a6ls 
and works. He points us to a glorious a6l where- 
by we may know what a God we honor and 
serve — namely, the God who delivered Israel 

* Elsewhere he says, " Faith, confession, and the aoss make 
a true Christian." 


from the house of bondage ; the God who has 
given us His Word, and His Son Christ, who has 
suffered and died for us ; the God who awakened 
Him again from the dead. 

Fidfillhig the Duties of our Calling the best 
Service of God. 

ST. PAUL in his Epistles has written more 
fully and wisely of virtues and good works 
than all the philosophers, for he exalts and glori- 
ously commends the works of each man's calling. 

HE said, " Master Joachim Morlein has 
pleased me well to-day with his sermon, 
for he spoke of the office and vocation of a wife, 
and a maid-servant — namely, that a wife should 
think she lives in a Holy Order, and that a 
serv^ant also may know that her works are good 
and holy works. This the people can carry 

IF a peasant knew the perils and toils of a 
prince, he would thank God that he was a 
peasant, and in the happiest and safest state. But 
the peasants know not their happiness and wel- 
fare. They look only on the outside pomp of 
princes, their fine clothes, golden chains, great 
castles, and houses ; but see not the care and 
peril wherein princes live, as in a fire and a 


PEASANTS' work is among the happiest, 
for it is full of hope. Ploughing, sowing, 
planting, propping, pruning, mowing, threshing, 
wood-cutting, are all labors full of hope. 

SO, also, men and maidens in a house are often 
better off than their masters and mistresses, 
for they have no household cares — have only to 
do their work, and when this is done, it is done ; 
and they can eat, and drink, and sing. My Wolf, 
and Orthe (Dorothea), my man, and my cook, 
are better off than my Kattie or I, for married 
life and the ordering of a household bring with 
them their trials and the holy cross. 

HE spoke of the legends of the holy Patri- 
archs, how far they exceeded the holi- 
ness of (reputed) saints, because they simply 
went on their way, in obedience to God, in the 
works of their calling, and did what came to 
their hand to do, according to God's command- 
ment, without choosing for themselves. 

Two Vocations, of Faith and of Love. 

NO one can understand any work aright 
unless he is called to it. 
Vocation is of two kinds. Either it is divine, 
comes from above, or from those who have the 
right to command ; and then it is a Vocation of 


Or it is a Vocation of Love, and comes from 
our equals. 

Two Sacrifices. 

THE first was called in the Old Testament 
the early or morning sacrifice. By this 
it was shadowed forth that we should first sacri- 
fice to God, not calves and oxen, iDut ourselves, 
acknowledging God's gifts, both bodily and 
spiritual, temporal and eternal, and giving Him 

The second the evening sacrifice. By this it 
was signified that a Christian should offer to 
God a broken, lowly, contrite heart, which con- 
fesses both its sin and danger, bodily and spirit- 
ual, and cries to God for help. 


What Obedience meant to Luther. 


ERE I stand : I can do no otherwise. 
God help me. Amen." 


'"nr^HREE whole days I was at Augsburg, 
X without the Imperial safe-condu6l. Mean- 
time they earnestly entreated me to say ' Re- 

"After three days the Bishop of Trent came 
and showed me the safe-condu6l. Then I went 
in all humility to the Cardinal ; fell at first on my 
knee; the second time on the ground ; the third 


time prostrate there so long that three times he 
bid me rise. Then I arose. That pleased him 
much. He hoped I would think better of it. 

" When I came to the Cardinal the second 
time, and would not recant, he said : 

" ' What meanest thou t Dost think the princes 
will defend thee with arms and armies .'' Surely, 
no ! Where, then, wilt thou take refuge } ' 

" I said, ' Under heaven.' " 


" T F the lot fell on me, I would not shrink from 
X the plague. I have been with many when 
they had it. I have now remained through three 
pestilences without fleeing." 


MERIT is a work for the sake of which 
Christ gives rewards. But no such 
work is to be found, for Christ gives by promise. 
Just as if a prince were to say to me : " Come to 
me in my castle, and I will give you a hundred 
florins." I do a work, certainly, in going to the 
castle, but the gift is not given me as the reward 
of my work in going, but because the prince 
promised it me. 




AITH is nothing else but the truth of 
the heart ; that is to say, a true and 
right opinion of the heart as touch- 
ing God. 

FAITH is the divinity of works, and is so 
spread throughout the works of the faithful 
as is the divinity throughout the humanity of 

Through faith we do good works. Through 
good works faith is made visible and compre- 
hensible. As the Godhead cannot be seen nor 
comprehended, but when Christ became incar- 
nate He was seen and handled. 

In all our doings, spiritual and bodily, faith 
must rule and reign, and the heart hold it sure 
and firm, that God is looking on us, holds us 
dear, will help us, and not forsake us. 


CHRISTIAN faith is not an idle quality or 
empty husk in the heart, until charity come 
and quicken it, but if it be true faith, it is a sure 
trust and confidence in the heart, and a firm con- 
sent whereby Christ is apprehended, so that Christ 
is the obje6l of faith, yea, rather, even in faith 
Christ himself is present. 

Faith, therefore, is a certain obscure knowl- 
edge, or rather darkness which seeth nothing, 
and yet Christ apprehended by faith sitteth in 
the darkness. 

The school divines do dream that faith is a 
quality cleaving in the heart, without Christ. 
But Christ should be so set forth that thou 
shouldst see nothing besides him, and shouldst 
think that nothing can be more unto thee, or 
more present with thy heart than He is. For 
he sitteth not idly in Heaven, but is present with 
us, working and living in us. 

Faith, therefore, is a certain steadfast beholding, 
which looketh upon nothing else but Christ, the 
conqueror of sin and death, and the giver of 
righteousness, salvation, and eternal life. 

FOR he that is a Christian hath Christ the 
Lord of the law present and enclosed in his 
heart, even as a ring hath a jewel or precious 
stone enclosed in it. 

He that hath faith in the heart hath such a 
treasure, that though it seemeth to be but little, 


is greater than heaven and earth, because Christ 
" the unspeakable gift " is greater. 

THE believing man hath the Holy Ghost, and 
where the Holy Ghost dwellcth, He will not 
suffer a man to be idle, but stirreth him up to all 
exercises of piety and godliness, and of true 
religion, to the love of God, to the patient suffer- 
ing of afflictions to prayer, to thanksgiving, and 
to the exercise of charity towards all men. 

BECAUSE thou hast laid hold on Christ by 
faith, through whom thou art made righteous- 
ness, begin now to work well. Love God and thy 
neighbor, call upon God, praise Him, and coi^ess 
Him. These are good works indeed, which flow 
out of this faith and this cheerfulness conceived 
in the heart, for that we have remission of sins 
freely by Christ. 

The Reflex A^ion of Faith. 


BUT weigh diligently every word of Paul, 
and especially mark well this pronoun 
" our ;" for the effe6l altogether consisteth in the 
well-applying of pronouns, which we find very 
often in the Scriptures ; wherein also there is 
ever some vehemency and power. 

Therefore, generally, it is an easy matter 
to magnify and amplify the benefit of Christ, 


namely that Christ was given for sins, but for 
other men's sins, which are worthy. But when 
it cometh to the putting to of this pronoun 
" otir^' there our weak nature and reason starteth 
back, and dare not come nigh unto God, nor 
promise to herself that so great a treasure shall 
be freely given unto her. 

WHEREFORE these words, " Which loveth 
Mel' are full of faith. And he who can 
utter this word " niel' and apply it unto himself 
with a true and constant faith as Paul did, shall 
be a good disputer with Paul against the law. 

For He delivered neither sheep, ox, gold nor 
silver, but even God Himself entirely and wholly 
" for me," even ''for me,'' I say, a miserable and 
wretched sinner. 

HUMAN wit treats these words, ''Who gave 
Himself for 02ir sins I' 2^^ if the sins were 
not real, true sins ; as if the words were said light- 
ly, and not, as they are, in true, bitter earnest. 

Faith Lifting tts to God's Horizon, 

PSALM XXXVH. " For they shall soon be 
cut down like the grass'.' He lifts us from 
our horizon to God's. In our sight the wicked 
flourish and increase and cover the whole earth. 
But in God's sight what are they } Hay ! The 
higher the grass is, the nearer the hay-fork. 


PSALM XXIII. " But the Lord shall laugh 
at III in, for He seeth that Jus day cometh!' 

Not that God laughs, Hke a man ; but that in 
truth it is a laughable thing to see foolish men 
raging (against the truth), and undertaking great 
things which they cannot really advance one 
hair's breadth. 

Just as a fool would be ridiculous, who with a 
long spear and a short dagger were to seek to 
smite the Sun out of the heavens, and with this 
prospe6l were to shout and glorify himself as 
if he had accomplished a grand feat. 

Faith and Hope. 

FAITH is a* teacher and a judge, fighting 
against errors and heresies, judging spirits 
and do6lrines. 

But Hope is, as it were, the general and cap- 
tain of the field, fighting against temptation, the 
cross, impatience, heaviness of spirit, despera- 
tion and blaspheming, and it waiteth for good 
things, even in the midst of all evils. 

FAITH and hope are in many ways distin- 
guished. Faith is in the understanding 
of man ; hope in the will ; and yet these two can 
no more be severed than the cherubim above the 
mercy seat. 

According to their ofifices ; faith di6lates, dis- 
tinguishes, teaches, and is knowledge and science. 


But hope exhorts, awakens, Ustens, waits, and 
patiently endures. 

Faith looks to the word and the promise, that 
is, the truth. But hope looks to that which the 
Word has promised, to the gifts. 

Faith exists at the beginning of life, before all 
tribulations and adversities. But hope follows 
afterwards and grows out of adversities. 

Faith strives against error and heresy. But 
hope strives against tribulation and tempta- 

As foresight and understanding are useless, 
and efFe6l nothing without manhood and cheer- 
fulness, so is faith nothing without hope ; for 
hope endures and overcomes misfortune and evil. 
And as a joyful heart without foresight and un- 
derstanding is foolhardiness, so is hope without 

Faith and hope are thus distinguished. Faith 
says, I believe in a resurre6lion of the dead at 
the Last Day. To this hope adds, " Then, if this 
is true, let us give up what we have, and suffer 
what we can, if hereafter we are to be such great 

ALL which happens in the whole world hap- 
pens through hope. No husbandman 
would sow a grain of corn, if he did not hope it 
would spring up and bring forth the ear. How 
much more are we helped on by hope in the way 
to eternal life. 


Faith and Charity, ' 

CHARITY giveth place, for it " suffereth 
all things." But faith giveth no place ; 
yea, it can suffer nothing. As concerning faith, 
we ought to be invincible and more hard, if it 
might be, than the adamant stone. But as 
touching charity we ought to be soft, and more 
flexible than the reed or leaf that is shaken by 
the wind, and ready to yield to everything. 

SEE the sun ! It brings us two things — light 
and heat. The rays of light beam dire611y 
on us. No king is powerful enough to intercept 
those keen, diredl and swift rays. But heat is 
radiated back to us from every side. Thus, like 
the light, faith should ever be dire6l and inflexi- 
ble ; but love, like the heat, should radiate on all 
sides, and meekly adapt itself to the wants of all 

The Trial of Faith. 

THE trial of faith is the greatest and heavi- 
est of all trials. For faith it is which 
must conquer in all trials. Therefore, if faith 
gives way, then the smallest and most trifling 
temptations can overcome a man. But when 
faith is sound and true, then all other tempta- 
tions must yield, and be overcome. 

ALAS ! that we believe God so little," he 
said. " I can trust my wife, and all 


of you, my friends, more than I can trust Him. 
Yet none of you would do and suffer for me 
what He did ; would suffer yourselves to be 
crucified for me." 

SECURE, easy spirits, like all false Chris- 
tians, when they have glanced over the 
Bible and heard a few sermons, soon persuade 
themselves they have the Holy Ghost, and that 
they understand and know all things. 

Ah ! true hearts find it far otherwise ; these 
pray every day, yea, every moment : " Lord, 
strengthen our faith." 

REAL believers are always thinking they 
believe not, therefore they are fighting, 
wrestling, striving, and toiling without ceasing, 
to preserve and increase their faith. Just as 
good and skilful masters of any art are always 
seeing and observing that something is lacking 
in their work, whilst bunglers and pretenders 
persuade themselves that they lack nothing, but 
that all they make and do is quite perfe6l. 


UR faith is weak, and yet it is a rock ; for 
it is the corner-stone of the heart. 


Martin Luther s own Faith in Trial. 

Letter from Coburg, during the Diet of Augsburg. 
To tJie Elcflor Frederic^ of Saxony. 

S to my affairs, my gracious lord, I an- 
swer thus : Your Ele6loral Grace knows 


(or if your Ele6loral Grace does not know, 
I hereby make it known), I have not received 
the Gospel from man, but from heaven, only 
through our Lord Jesus Christ, so that I might 
well esteem and subscribe myself (as henceforth 
I will) His servant and evangelist. That I 
have at any time submitted myself to human 
hearing and judgment was not because I doubt- 
ed this, but from humility, to win others. 

Now, however, that I see how my too great 
humility will lead to the degrading of the Gos- 
pel, and that if I yield the devil a hand's breadth, 
he will take the whole place, by constraint of 
my conscience I must a6l otherwise. I have 
yielded enough this year, in deference to your 
Ele61oral Grace ; for the devil knows well it was 
no faint-heartedness that made me yield. He 
saw my heart well, when I came into Worms ; 
that if I had known that as many devils 
would set upon me as there are tiles on the 
roofs, I would have leapt down among them with 

After all, Duke George is far from being equal 
to one single devil. And since the Father of 
unfathomable mercy has, through the Gospel, 
made us joyful lords over all the devils, and over 
death, and has given us such wealth of trust that 
we can say to Him, " most dear Father," it would 
indeed be the most shameful slight to such a Fa- 
ther that we could not trust Him to make us lords 
over Duke George's wrath. 


This, at least, I know well of myself; if need- 
ful I would ride into Leipzig, if it rained Duke 
Georges nine days, and each Duke George were 
ninefold more furious than this one. 

They hold my Lord Christ to be a man twisted 
of straw ! This may my Lord, and I, for a while, 
indeed, endure. 

It is another than Duke George with whom I 
have to do, who knows me pretty well, and I 
know Him not ill. 

Your Ele6toral Grace is only lord over goods 
and bodies. But Christ is Lord also over souls, 
to whom He has sent me, and to that end has 
awakened me. These souls I dare not forsake. 
I hope my Lord Christ will overcome our foes, 
and will be well able to shield me from them, if 
He so will. If so he will not. His dear will be 

Letter to Melanchthon during the Diet of 

THE end and event of the cause troubles thee, 
that thou canst not order it. But if thou 
couldst comprehend it, then would I be no parta- 
ker in such a cause, much less the author of it. 

God has placed this cause in a certain common 
place, which thou hast not in thy rhetoric, nor 
in thy philosophy. It is called Faith, in which 
place are set all things invisible, and that do not 
appear, which things, if any one seeks to render 


visible, apparent and comprehensible, as thou art 
doing, he shall reap cares and tears as the reward 
of his labor, which in truth thou art reaping, all 
of us meanwhile warning thee in vain. 

God dwelleth in the clouds, and has set this 
darkness as His curtain. Let him who will, 
change this. 

If Moses had insisted on knowing the end, 
and how he was to escape the hosts of Pharaoh, 
Israel would probably have been in Egypt to 
this day. 

To Brentius on Melanchthon s Fears. 

AFTER us, God will be the Creator, as He 
was before us, and is to-day, with us. He 
will not die with us, nor cease to be God, ruling 
even men's thoughts. 

It seemed to Eli, the priest, that the kingdom 
of Israel was perishing, the ark being taken by 
the Philistines ; but Eli perished first, and the 
kingdom afterwards began to flourish most. 

Philip designs to be head-ruler of the world, 
that is to crucify himself But I know that He 
will be, in the future, who said, " WJicre is Abel., 
thy brother ? " 

If God exists, not here only do we live ; but 
wherever He lives we shall live. If these things 
are true, what, I ask, are these furious threats of 
idols, not merely dying, but wholly lifeless } He 
who created mc will be the Father of my son, a 
Husband to my wife, the Ruler of my country, 


the Preacher to my parish, and better than all 
that (when I am gone). 

To Shalatin, 

PHILIP thinks to accomplish his own coun- 
sel. Sic fecissem ego. No ! it must not 
be " Sic ego Philippusr The " ego " is too small. 
The word is, " / am that I am!' 

Do thou exhort Philip in my name not to 
make himself God, but to fight against that 
innate ambition of divinity implanted in us by 
the Devil in Paradise. This cast Adam out of 
Paradise, and this only disquiets us, and casts us 
out of peace. 

We are to be men, and not God. This is the 
sum of the whole matter. Otherwise eternal 
unrest and heart-sorrow is our portion. 

To ytistus yonas. 

CHRIST has come ; and He sitteth at the 
right hand, not of Caesar, but of God, 
This may be very incredible. I nevertheless 
delight in this incredible thing ; and therein I 
will dare to die. Why, then, should I not live 
therein 1 

I would that Philip would take this my faith, 
if he has none beside. 

" On the right hand," is indeed a little thing ; 
but the " My',' " My right hand ; " where has that 
an end } 


The pronoun does it. The name Adonai, 
which follows the '' I have said,'' will take good 
care of the precious " Sit Thou,'' until " Thy foes 
Thy footstool" shall also come. What recks it, 
if David falls .? 

Farewell in Christ, and believe us, as thou 
dost, that Christ is King of kings and Lord of 
lords. If He lose this title at Augsburg, He 
will have lost it in heaven and on earth. Amen. 

To the Ckcincellor Brilck, at Au^sburor^ 
from " the Wilder7iess' {Cohtirg). 


I HAVE lately seen two miracles. The first, 
as I was looking out of the window, and 
saw the stars in heaven, and the whole fair vault 
of God, yet saw nowhere any pillars whereon 
the Master had raised this vault. Nevertheless 
the heavens fell not, and that fair vault stands 

Now, there are some who search for the pillars, 
and would fain grasp and feel them. And be- 
cause they cannot do this they totter and tremble 
as if the heavens must surely fall, from no other 
cause save that they cannot grasp these pillars, 
nor see them. If they could grasp these pillars, 
then (no doubt) the heavens would stand firm ! 

The second miracle is this. I saw also vast, 
thick clouds lowering over us, with such a weight 
that they might be compared to a great ocean. 
Yet saw I no floor whereon they were based, 


nor any shore whereby they were bound. Never- 
theless they fell not on us, but saluted us with 
a frowning" countenance and fled away. 

When they had passed by, then shone forth 
their floor, whereon they were based, and also 
our roof, the rainbow. Yet that was indeed a 
feeble, slight, insignificant floor and roof; so 
slight that it faded away into the clouds, and 
was more like a prism, such as is wont to stream 
through painted glass, than such a mighty floor ; 
so that one might well have despaired on ac- 
count of the feebleness of the floor, as much as 
on account of the great weight of the waters. 

Nevertheless it was found, in fa6l, that this 
feeble prism bore up the weight of waters and 
shielded us. 

Yet there are some who look at the mass and 
weight of the clouds, and consider these more 
than this slight, subtile, narrow prism. They 
would fain feel the power of the prism, and 
because they cannot do this, they fear that the 
clouds will pour down an eternal deluge. 

The Sea Restraiited by a Rope of Sand, 

LET the adversaries rage and storm as long 
as they can. God has set its bound to 
the sea. He suffers it to rage and swell, and 
to rush on with its waves in vehement assaults, 
as if it would cover and overwhelm all things. 
But nevertheless it does not pass the shore, al- 


though God binds it not with bands of iron, but 
of sand. 

THROUGH what inner conflia this faith 
of Luther's was maintained, I have and 
know nothing of Jesus Christ (since I have not 
seen him with my bodily eyes, nor heard with 
my bodily ears), save only His name. Yet have 
I, thank God, learned so much of Him from 
the Scriptures that I am well contented there- 
with, and desire not to see or hear Him in the 
flesh. Moreover, in my deepest weakness, in ter- 
rors and pressure of the burden of sin, in fear 
and trembling before death, in persecution from 
the false, cruel world, often have I experienced 
and felt the divine power of this name in me, 
abandoned as I was by all creatures. I have 
proved its power to snatch me from death, to 
make me live again, to comfort me in the greatest 
despair, especially during the Diet of Augsburg 
in the year 1530. 

AS a shoemaker makes shoes, and a tailor 
coats, so should a Christian pray. Prayer 
is the Christian's business. Let us pray and 
strive ; for the word of faith and the prayer of 
the just are the mightiest weapons. 


A COMPLAINT was once made to Do6lor 
Martin Luther, " Dear Herr Do6lor, things 
are issuing and happening nowhere as we would 
have them." " Well," he said, " that is precisely 
right. Have you not given up your will to our 
Lord God, praying every day, " Thy will be done 
on earth as it is in heaven ? " 

OH, it is a great and mighty thing, the 
prayer of the just. But God knows best 
how and when to grant our prayers, for if He 
did always as we would. He would be our cap- 
tive. I prayed once for the life of a suffering 
woman, with great anguish and wrestling of 
heart. But God knew best. He did indeed 
hear our prayer in such a way that in the life to 
come that good woman will thank me for it. 

WE should commit all to God. He will 
make it all well. " Eveji to hoar hairs I 
will carry yon ; I have made, and I ivill bear. I 
will carry and deliver yon. Therefore lay it all 
on me, my beloved ; commit it to me." 

So Saint Peter : " Casting all your care iipon 
Himr That is a choice, consoling saying. And 
" Cast thy burden on the Lord, and He will sustain 

Ah, these are beautiful, comforting sayings ! 
But we want to do and order all ourselves, al- 
though we are not able, yea it is impossible. 


We want to lift and carry all ourselves, and 
forget our Lord God, and so we sink, and make 
the evil worse. 

Indeed, sayest thou, I have committed all to 
Him, but He will not come. He delays too long. 
Oh, wait on the Lord — we must wait and hold on ; 
for at last he will surely come. 

ALL who call on God in true faith, ear- 
nestly, from the heart, will certainly be 
heard, and will receive what they have asked and 
desired, although not in the hour or in the 
measure, or the very thing which they ask ; yet 
they will obtain something greater and more 
glorious than they had dared to ask. 

THE cry and sigh of the heart raises a clam- 
or that not only God but all the angels 
in heaven must hear. Thus, Moses was dis- 
mayed when he came to the Red Sea. He cried 
with trembling, shuddering, and dismay, and 
nevertheless did not open his mouth. " O Lord 
God," he said, " what shall I do now } How can 
I find my way out t I am the cause that all this 
people will be here miserably murdered. There 
is no help nor counsel. Before us is the sea ; be- 
hind us are our foes, the Egyptians ; on both sides 
hisfh mountains. It is all over with us." Then 
God answered, " Wherefore criest thou unto me." 
— Exodus xiv. 13, 14, 15- 

But we read their examples as if they were a 
dead letter. 


Moses must have heaved a great sigh, that he 
filled therewith the ears of God. It is contrary 
to all which reason could have expe61ed that 
they went through the Red Sea. For their way 
through the Red Sea is as broad as from Witten- 
burg to Coburg, or at least from Wittenburg to 
Magdeburg. In the night, moreover, they must 
have rested and eaten. For six hundred thou- 
sand men, not including women and children, 
even if they went three hundred and fifty, or even 
five hundred abreast, must have taken time. 

Thus the cry of Moses seemed to Moses indeed 
little, but to God great. 


E think this groaning which we make in 
these terrors, and this weakness, scarcely 
to be a groaning, far less a cry. For our faith, which 
in temptation thus groaneth unto Christ, is very 
weak if we consider our own sense and feeling, 
and therefore we hear not this cry. 

But to the searcher of hearts this small and fee- 
ble groaning (as it seemeth unto us), is a loud and 
mighty cry, in comparison whereof the great and 
horrible roarings of the law, of sin, of death, of 
the devil, and of hell, are as nothing, neither can 
they even be heard. It filleth heaven, so that 
the angels think they hear nothing but this 

These feeble cries were our guns and artillery 
wherewith we have, so many years, scattered the 
counsels and enterprises of our adversaries. 


NO one believes how mighty and strong prayer 
is, and how much it can do, save he who 
has learned by experience and tried it. But it is 
a great thing, when any one feels great need 
pressing on him, if he can grasp prayer. 

FOR I know, as often as I have earnestly 
prayed, when it has been real earnest with 
me I have indeed been richly heard, and have 
obtained more than I have prayed for. God has 
for a time delayed, but nevertheless the help 
has come. 

Ah, how truly grand a thing is the honest 
prayer of a true Christian ! How mighty it 
is with God ; that a poor human creature can 
so speak with the High Majesty in Heaven, 
and not dread him, but know that God is kindly 
smiling on him, for Jesus Christ's sake. His 
dear Son, our Lord and Saviour! To this 
end, the heart and conscience must not look 
back, must not doubt or fear on account of 

THE ancients have well described prayer as 
the lifting up of the heart to God. It was 
well said. But I and many others in olden times 
did not understand the definition aright. We 
spoke and boasted of "the lifting up of the heart," 
the '' ascensiis mentis;'' but our syntax failed, 
for we could not add the " Deum^' the word 




DEAR brethren, pray with the heart, some- 
times also with the Hps ; for prayer sus- 
tains the world : without prayer things would be 
far otherwise. 

THE prayer of the Church works great mira- 
cles. In our own days it has raised three 
from the dead ; myself, who have often lain sick 
to death ; my wife Kathe, who was also sick to 
death ; and Philip Melanchthon, who, in 1540, lay 
sick to death at Weimar. 

Yet these are poor miracles, to be observed 
on account of those who are weak in faith. 

Far greater miracles to me are these : 
that our Lord God every day in the Church 
baptizes, gives the Sacrament of the Altar, 
absolves, and delivers from sin, from death, and 
eternal damnation. These are to me the great 

What a strong wall and fortification to the 
Church, and what a weapon for Christians is 
prayer ! 

Ah, what an excellent Master composed the 
Lord's Prayer ! What an endless rhetoric and 
eloquence lies hidden in those words, wherein 
all things, all necessities, are comprehended. 

The first three petitions embrace such great, 
excellent, and heavenly things, that no heart can 
ever fathom them. 

The fourth petition gathers together all policy 
and economy, national and domestic govern- 


ment, and all which is bodily and temporal, 
and needful for this life. 

The fifth contends against the devil of a bad 
conscience ; against inborn and a6lual sins, 
which burden the conscience. 

Truly One who is wise made this prayer, whom 
no man can rival. 

AH, we have cried and prayed so long, and 
Thou wilt not give us rain ! Surely, if 
Thou givest not rain, Thou wilt give something 
better — a still and quiet life. 

THE prayer of the heart, and the complaints 
of the poor, raise such a cry that all the 
angels in heaven must hear it. Our Lord God 
hears, with quick, delicate hearing, the faintest 

THOSE deep sighs, in deep necessities, are 
the true great clamor and fervent cry 
before which the heavens are rent. 

THE catisa cfficiens of prayer is simply faith 
itself Causa per accidens, which drives us 
to prayer, is necessity. The fo7'ma, is to grasp 
the mercy so freely given. Materia circa quam 
is the promise, and the command of God to pray, 
to which prayer holds and cleaves, and on which it 
is based. Finis is the hearing and deliverance. 


I have not yet prayed the whole Psalter 
through. The Lord's Prayer is my prayer. 

GOD gives not according to the measure, 
manner, and time that we would pre- 
scribe. He will be unfettered. But He gives 
good measure, pressed down and running over, 
as Christ says. 

Thus did St. Augustine's mother. She asked 
that her son might be converted. But it came 
not to pass. She went to all the learned men, 
that they might persuade him. At last she en- 
treated him to marry a Christian maiden, that 
she might bring him to the faith. But nothing 

But when at last our Lord God comes, He 
comes indeed, and makes such an Augustine of 
him, that to this day he is called a light of the 

SOME have vehemently prayed for tempta- 
tion, that they might not grow careless 
without the cross. I, however, will never more 
pray for temptation, but only, *' Lead me not 
into temptation." 

EVERY sigh of a Christian is a prayer ; 
when he sighs he prays. 

THIS saying, "Ask, and ye shall receive," 
means nothing less than ask, call, cry, 
knock, knock vehemently. And this we must 
do, on and on, without ceasing. 


l7itercession for tJiose in Authority. 

PRINCES and lords are poor people, espe- 
cially when they are good and God-fear- 
ing ; therefore our Lord God has not vainly com- 
manded us to honor and pray for them. 

I did not so well understand this command until 
I learned it with reference to my two Ele61ors 
and lords, Duke John and Duke John Frederic. 
Often they cannot help if they would. There- 
fore they sorely need the prayer of Christians. 

Praying and Waiting. 

LET us pray and call on God in all tribula- 
tions, and wait. 
Let us keep to Christ, and cling to Him, and 
hang on Him, so that no power can sever us. 
Then soon we shall see Him with joy, at that Day. 


THANKSGIVING makes our prayers bold 
and strong, easy, moreover, pleasant and 
sweet ; feeds and enkindles them as with coals 
of fire. 


CHRIST suffers not that one should pray for 
himself alone, but for the whole commu- 
nity of all men. For He teaches us not to say " My 
Father," but " Our Father." Prayer is a spirit- 


ual, common possession ; therefore we must de- 
spoil no one of it, not even our enemies. For as 
He is the Father of us all, He wills that we shall 
be brothers amongst each other, and pray for 
one another, as for ourselves. 

Prayer of Luther^ Overheard during the 
Diet of Worms, 

ALMIGHTY, everlasting God," how terrible 
this world is ! How it would open its jaws 
to devour me. And how weak is my trust in 
Thee! The flesh is weak, and the devil is 
strong ! O Thou my God, help me against all 
the wisdom of this world. Do Thou the work. 
It is for Thee alone to do it ; for the work is 
Thine, not mine. I have nothing to bring me 
here. I have no controversy to maintain — not 
I — with the great ones of the earth. I, too, 
would fain that my days should glide along, happy 
and calm. But the cause is Thine. It is righteous ; 
it is eternal. O Lord, help me ! Thou that 
art faithful, Thou that art unchangeable ! It is 
not in any man I trust. That were vain indeed. 
All that is in man gives way ; all that comes 
from man faileth. O God, my God, dost Thou 
not hear me } Art Thou dead } No ; Thou 
canst not die. Thou art hiding Thyself 

Thou hast chosen me for this work. I know 
it. Oh, then, arise and work ! Be Thou on my 
side, for the sake of Thy beloved Son, Jesus 


Christ, who is my defence, my shield, and my 

O Lord my God, where art Thou ? Come ; 
come ! I am ready — ready to forsake Hfe for Thy 
truth ; patient as a lamb. For it is a righteous 
cause, and it is Thine own. I will not depart 
from Thee now, nor through eternity. And al- 
though the world should be full of demons ; 
although my body (which, nevertheless, is the 
work of Thy hands) should be doomed to bite the 
dust, to be stretched on the rack, cut into pieces, 
consumed to ashes, the soul is Thine. Yes ; for 
this I have the assurance of Thy Word. My 
soul is Thine. It will abide near Thee through- 
out the endless ages. Amen. O God, help Thou 
me ! Amen. 

Amen, amen — that means Yes, yes; that shall 
be done. 

(^l)C lllov^ of ^olr. 

THE Word of God is a fiery shield, for this 
reason, that it is more enduring and 
purer than gold tried in the fire ; which gold 
loses nothing in the fire, but it stands the fire, 
endures, and overcomes all trial. So, he who 
believes in the Word of God, overcomes all, 
and continues eternally secure against all mis- 
fortune. This shield shrinks not from the gates 
of hell, but the gates of hell tremble before it. 


THE words of the Lord Christ are the most 
powerful ; they have hands and feet, and 
overcome all attacks, all subtilties and devices of 
the wise. Thus we see in the Gospel how Christ, 
with quite simple, common words, brought to 
shame the wisdom of the Pharisees, so that they 
could find no escape from them. 

It is a very acute and conclusive syllogism, 
when the Lord says, '^Render unto Ccesar the 
thino-s that are Ccesar s :'' for He neither bids 
nor forbids to pay the tribute, but answers them 
with their own arguments ; as if He had said, 
" If, indeed, you have suffered Caesar to make 
such inroads that you have, and use his coinage, 
then give him what you owe him." 

THERE is no greater grace or possession 
than to believe that God speaks to us. If 
we believed that, we should be already blessed. 


THROUGH so many commentaries and 
books the dear Bible is buried, so that people 
do not look at the text itself It is far better to 
see with our own eyes than with other people's 
eyes. For which reason I could wish that all 
my own books were buried nine ells deep in the 
earth, on account of the bad example they may 
give to others to follow me in writing multitudes 
of books. 


The Second Psalm, 

THIS is a right lofty psalm against the 
enemies of God. It begins softly and 
simply, but it goes out with magnificence. It 
is a lofty, noble psalm. It says, Come and see 
what the Lord doeth. He has been now six 
thousand years in the Council, ruling and mak- 
ing all laws. Habitator cccli. He that dwelleth 
in the heavens takes our cause in hand. 

MANY foes, Egyptian, Babylonian, Persian, 
Greek, and Roman, have raged against the 
Bible, endeavoring to extirpate it ; but they 
have been able to accomplish nothing. They 
are all gone, but the book remains for ever perfe6l. 
Who then has preserved it, and defended it with 
such great power } No one surely but God 
Himself, who is the Master. And it is a great 
miracle that God has preserved the book so long, 
for the devil and the world hate it bitterly. 

THE resurre6lion of the Lord Christ through 
the Word does not take place without an 
earthquake, as Christ Himself also did not come 
forth from the grave without an earthquake. 

But such an earthquake is pleasanter to true 
hearts, than that Christ should lie in the grave 
and rest. When there is peace and rest in 

Christendom it is a bad sign. 



WHEN the devil finds me idle and unarmed, 
not heeding God's Word, he works on my 
conscience that I have taught wrong, and stirred 
up by my do6lrine much offence and division 
compared with the former state of the Church, 
which was still and peaceful. 

I cannot deny I am often in depression and 
anguish on this account ; but when I grasp the 
Word of God, I have won the battle. 

WE see, and experience teaches us, how 
powerful and strong Divine Truth is ; it 
presses through all the obstacles by which it is 
hemmed in ; the more we read it, the more it 
moves us ; it takes the heart captive, and creates 
other good thoughts. 

®l)e Sacraments. 

Holy Baptism, 

tor Hieronymus Weller " How it went with 
him.''" "Sadly and mournfully," said he; "I 
know not how it is." Whereon Dr. Martin Lu- 
ther replied, "Have you, then, not been baptized ? " 
What a great gift of God is baptism ! What a 
great gift also is the Word of God ; we should 
thank God from our hearts that we have His 
Word. For it is God who comforts and strength- 


ens us, and who has given us His Holy Spirit for 
a pledge and a foretaste. 

HEAVEN is given to me freely, and is my 
(royal) gift, and I have letters and seals for 
it ; that is, I am baptized and go to the sacrament. 
Therefore I take care of the letter, that the devil 
may not tear it in pieces ; that is, I live and abide 
in the fear of God, and pray the Lord's Prayer. 

God could not have given me salvation and the 
gospel save through the death, the suffering, and 
dying of His dear Son. And when I believe 
that He has overcome death, and has died for 
me, and I look at the promise of the Father, 
then I have the letter complete, and the seal of 
baptism and of the sacrament of the altar (the 
true essential body and blood of our Lord Christ) 
affixed to it ; thus I am well provided for. 

We should hold it certain that baptism is 
God's ordinance, which He has appointed, that 
we may know where we may surely find Him. 
He seeks us ; He comes to us ; we cannot come 
to Him of ourselves. 

The Sacrament of the Altar. 
" ^ [ ^HE true cause of this sacrament," said 
X Dr. Martin Luther, "is the word and 
appointment of Christ, who has instituted and 
established it. The materia is bread and wine ; 
\\\t form is the true body and blood of Christ; 
\.h.Q Ji?ial catise whereto it is ordained is the 7ise 
and fruit, that we may strengthen our faith, and 


not doubt that the body of Christ is given for us, 
and His blood poured out for us, and that our sins 
are surely forgiven us through the death of Christ." 

THIS sacrament can only be received and 
embraced by the heart ; for it is not with 
the hand that we receive such a gift and eternal 

THIS benefit and grace have we now re- 
ceived, that Christ is our Saviour, not our 
severe Judge ; our Redeemer and Deliverer, not 
our accuser and jailer who takes us captive. 
For we are all sinners in Adam, guilty of eternal 
death, and condemned ; but we are all now 
justified, redeemed, and consecrated by the 
blood of Christ. Let us grasp this with faith. 

The Vow of Baptism the True a7id Highest 


A CARNAL man does not understand why 
Paul so often boasts that he is an apostle of 
Jesus Christ according to the will of God. This 
boasting was as necessary to him in heavy 
temptation as an article of the faith. Satan had 
gained far more advantage over me, also, if I 
had not been a doctor by vocation. 

It is not a little thing to change the whole 
religion and do6lrine of the Papacy. How hard 
it was to me, will be seen in that Day ; now no 
one believes it. 

Gladly, at first, would I have subjeded myself 


to the Pope and his clergy ; they, however, would 
not receive such humility and obedience from 
me, but insisted, as to-day, that I should give the 
lie to God, deny Christ, call His gospel heresy. 
Before I do that, I would, if God willed, and if "it 
were possible, rather be burned ten times over. 

In my baptism I promised my Lord Christ I 
would believe on Him, and cleave fast to Him. 
This, by His grace, working, and help, I will do. 
To this I keep in all my temptations (namely, to 
the vow which I made in baptism, which is the 
true and highest vow, that I would be faithful to 
Him), whereon He, on His part, promised He 
would be my God. If I had not had this conso- 
lation, I had long before fainted for great anguish 
in my heavy temptations. The dear Lord help 
further. Amen ! 

C"^ OD speaks to me in His word through His 
y ministers (as Christ says, " He who hear- 
eth you heareth Me "), and says to me, " I have 
baptized thee and received thee for my child, for 
Christ's sake, my beloved Son, who counted not 
His life dear unto Him to redeem thee. In him 
are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowl- 
edge, and these I give to thee to be thine own." 
This only comforts. If Christ is lost, all is lost 
in heaven and on earth. 


T is far too long a delay, if we wait to learn 
to know Christ until the last confli6l. He 


came to us in baptism, and has been with us 
always, and has already made the bridge for us 
on which we pass from this life through death 
into the life beyond. 

CHRIST was offered once for all ; now He 
requires nothing but that we should give 
Him thanks forever. 

HE who receives a sacrament does not per- 
form a good work ; he receives a benefit. 
In the mass we give Christ nothing ; we only 
receive from Him. 

IT is not the external eating which makes the 
Christian. It is the internal and spiritual 
eating which is the work of faith, and without 
which all external things are mere empty shows 
and vain grimaces. 

This spiritual bread is the consolation of the 
affli6led, the cure of the sick, the life of the dy- 
ing, food to the hungry, the treasure of the poor. 


Preparation for Preaching. 

DOCTOR MARTIN said to a pastor, " When 
you are about to preach, speak to God, 
and say, * My Lord God, I wish to preach to 
Thine honor, to speak of Thee, to praise Thee, 
to glorify thy name.' " 


Think not of me, nor of Philip, nor any of the 
learned, but remember you are then most learned 
in the pulpit when you speak of God. I have never 
been troubled because I could not preach well ; 
but often, because I had to speak, before the face 
of God, of His great Majesty and Divine Being. 

ONCE, when Dr. Martin sat under the pear- 
tree in his garden, he asked Magister An- 
thony Lauterbach how he prospered with his 
preaching } When he complained of his tempt- 
ations, difficulties, and weakness, Dr. Martin 
said, " Ah, my friend, so it has been with me. 
I have dreaded the pulpit quite as much as you 
can ; yet I had to go on. 

" But you want to be a master all at once. 
Perhaps you are seeking honor, and are therefore 
tempted. You should preach for our Lord God, 
and not regard how men think and judge. If any 
one can do better, let him ; do you preach Christ 
and the Catechism. Such wisdom will lift you 
above the judgments of all men, their praise or 
blame ; for this wisdom is God's, wiser than men. 

" You need not expedl praise from me ; if I 
hear you, I shall be sure to find fault ; for you 
young (journeymen) preachers must be set down, 
lest you become ambitious and proud. But this 
thou shouldst ascertain ; that thou art called to 
this, that Christ hath need of thee to help praise 
Him. On this stand firm ; let who will praise 
or blame, that is not thy concern." 


DR. MARTIN exhorted the clergy that they 
should not torture and detain their hear- 
ers with long sermons, " For/' said he, " the 
pleasure of listening passes away from them ; 
and the preachers do them hurt and violence 
with long preaching." " Some," said Dr. Martin, 
" plague the people with too long sermons ; for 
the faculty of listening is a tender thing, and 
soon becomes weary and satiated." 

HE was asked, " Which was the greater, to 
controvert adversaries, or to exhort and 
hold up the weak "i " 
He answered and said : 

" Both are good and needful, although to com- 
fort the faint-hearted is something greater ; and 
yet the weak themselves are edified and improved 
by hearing the faith contended for. Each is 
God's gift." 

YOU should not attempt to judge or criticise 
yourself It often happens to me that I 
am ashamed of my sermon when I have finished 
it, and think how cold it has been ; yet others 
have afterwards commended the same sermon 
much to me. 

The Best Teachers always Learners. 

IT is a true word in theology, that those who 
think they know anything know really 
nothing. For he who truly hears and learns 


God's Word, can never wonder at it enough, or 
learn it to the bottom. Let every one humble 
himself and remain a learner therein. 

D7\ Luther s Portrait of a good Preacher, 

A GOOD preacher should have these virtues 
and qualities. 

First, he should be able to teach plainly and 
in order. 

Secondly, he should have a good head. 

Thirdly, he should have good power of speech. 

Fourthly, a good voice. 

Fifthly, a good memory. 

Sixthly, he should know when to stop. 

Seventhly, he should be sure what he means to 
say, and should study diligently. 

Eighthly, he should be ready to stake body and 
life, goods and glory, on its truth. 

Ninthly, he must suffer himself to be vexed and 
criticised by everybody. 

Keeping to the Point. 

WHOEVER understands a subject thor- 
oughly and intimately, can speak well 
about it. 

" T endeavor in my sermons," said Dj. Mar- 

-L tin, " to take a text and keep to it ; and 

so to show it to the people, and spread it out 

before them, that they may say, * This is what 


the sermon was about.' Soldiers should not 
greet every one they meet. Dr. Pommer is too 
much given sometimes to take with him every- 
thing he meets on his way. See what the main 
point is, and keep to it." 


LET all thy sermons be of the simplest. Look 
not to the princes, but to the simple, 
unwise, rude, and unlearned people ; for the 
prince is made of the same stuff. If I in my 
sermons were to regard Philip Melanchthon and 
the other do6lors, I should do no good ; but I 
preach in the simplest way to the unlearned, and 
that pleases all. (I keep the Hebrew and Greek 
for the times when we learned men are alone to- 
gether. Then we can talk such crabbed stuff 
they may well wonder at us in heaven.) 

A PREACHER should have the skill to 
teach the unlearned, simply, roundly, and 
plainly ; for teaching is of more importance 
than exhorting. 

NO one should preach for me and Philip, 
however much we might learn from it. 
Preaching should not be magnificent with great, 
splendid, labored words, that men may see how 
learned we are. Ah, that is worth nothing. In 
the church every one should use the simple 


mother-tongue, such as every one can under- 

The do6lors are present by forty, young peo- 
ple and unlearned by the thousand. 

HE who has one word of God and cannot 
make a sermon out of it can never be a 

TO preach simply is a high art. Christ does 
it himself. He speaks of husbandry, 
of sowing seed, and uses simple peasants' 

ALBRECHT DURER, the famous painter," 
said Dr. Luther, " used to say he had no 
pleasure in pi6lures that were painted with many 
colors, but in those which were painted with a 
choice simplicity." So it is with me as to 

IF I had to preach only to Dr. Hieronymus, 
or to Philip, I would not make another ser- 
mon my life-long, for they understand well 
enough already. Children, men-servants, and 
maid-servants attend our churches ; to these we 
must preach ; these need our preaching, not the 
learned. It is the poor young people and the 
simple with whom we have to do ; to these we 
must come down. 

So did the Lord Christ ; He speaks as if for 


His audience He had none other than my Httle 
Martin, Paul and Magdalene. When, indeed. He 
comes to the Pharisees, He gives them severe 

We should preach to the little children ; for 
the sake of such as these the office of preaching 
is instituted. 

Dr. Martin said the best books of the Bible to 
preach from, were the Psalter, the Gospel of St. 
John, and St. Paul ; but for the common people, 
and the young, the other Gospels. 

WE must not teach the common people about 
high, difficult things, and with subtle 
words, for they cannot comprehend. Into the 
church come poor little children, maidens, old 
women and men, to whom such teaching is use- 
less ; and even if they say, " Ah, he said precious 
things ; he made a fine discourse ! " if one asks 
them further, " What did he say t " they often 
reply, " Ah, I do not know." To poor people we 
must call white, white, and black, black, all in 
the simplest way. 

Ah, what pains our Lord Christ took to teach 
simply. From vineyards, sheep, and trees He 
drew His similes ; anything in order that the 
multitudes might understand, embrace, and re- 
tain it. 


THIS is not the time for jest, but for earnest. 
" Ye are the salt of the earth." Salt bites 


and pains, but it cleanses and preserves from 

Feeding and Guarding, 

IN a true, good shepherd, feeding and guard- 
ing must be combined ; for, if the guarding 
fails, the wolf will devour all the more readily the 
sheep which are well fed. 

A preacher must be both a warrior and a 
shepherd. To feed is to teach, and that is the 
most difficult art ; but it is needful also to be 
able to contend and defend. 

The Best Kind of Controversy. 

I COUNSEL those who preach in papal 
countries to teach the Gospel simply, with- 
out any snapping or biting. If they do this the 
Pope will fall, for he does not stand on the 

Religioics Vanity, Gloria Religionis. 

HE complained much of the vanity and self- 
sufficiency of the clergy, especially of 
the younger. '* A new Jurist," he said, " is in 
his first year a Justinian ; that is, he thinks him- 
self superior to all the do61ors, and has nothing 
but law in his head ; the second year he is a 
Do6lor ; the third, a Licentiate ; the fourth, a 
Bachelor ; the fifth, a Student." 


VERY one should be content with his own 
gifts which (lod has given him ; for we 


cannot all be Pauls and John Baptists ; there 
must also be Tituses and Timothys. We need 
in any building more common stones than cor- 
ner stones. 

Excelleiice of the Office of the Preacher and 


HE who thinks lightly of preachers and of 
women will never come to good ; as is 
commonly said. The office of the preacher, and 
women, the mothers of our children, must be 
held in all honor, that these be kept right and 
pure. The rule of the home and the State de- 
pends on them. Whosoever, therefore, despises 
these, and sets them at naught, despises God 
and man. 

I WOULD wish that no one were suffered 
to be a preacher until he had first been a 
schoolmaster. Now, young men go at once 
from the school to the pulpit. But when any 
one has kept a school for ten years, he may leave 
it with a good conscience. The work is too 
heavy and too little esteemed. Yet a school- 
master is as necessary in a town as a pastor. 
We might more easily do without burgomasters, 
princes, and nobles, than without schools, for 
these must govern the world. 

No potentate or lord but needs to be guided 
by a jurist or theologian ; and these come from 


If I were no preacher, I know no calling on 
earth that I should prefer to that of a school- 
master. But we must not look at what the world 
rewards and esteems ; we must consider what 
God esteems and will honor in that Day. 

Trials ajid Burdens of the Preacher. 

TO be a true pastor and preacher is a great 
thing ; and if our Lord God Himself did 
not give strength, the thing could not be. 

It needs a great soul to serve the people with 
body and soul, goods and honor, and to suffer 
for it the greatest peril and ingratitude. 

Therefore it was that Christ said to Peter, 
*^ Peter, lovest thou Mef and repeats it three 
times, and then says, '' Feed My sheep!' It is as 
if He said : " If thou wilt be a true shepherd 
and friend of souls, thou must be so from love to 
Me." Otherwise it is impossible. For who will 
and can suffer ingratitude, spend his health and 
substance in study, and, for a reward, stand in 
the greatest peril } Therefore He says : " It is 
a necessity that thou shouldst love Me." 

I HAVE begun, and I will persevere. I would 
not take the whole world to begin again, so 
exceeding great and heavy are the cares and 
sorrows of this office. Dear sirs, it is no child's 
play. Nevertheless, when I look at Him who 
has called me, I would not wish not to have un- 
dertaken it. 


IF I were to write of the burdens which a 
preacher must bear, as I have experienced 
them, I should terrify every one from the office. 
A true God-fearing preacher must be so minded, 
that nothing is dearer to him than Christ his 
Lord and Saviour, and the future eternal life ; 
so that when he has lost this life and all things, 
Christ may say to him, " Come hither to Me ; 
thou hast been my good and faithful servant." 

IT was once asked, when two preachers at 
Nlirnberg had died of the Plague, " if a 
preacher, whose office is only preaching, may, 
with a good conscience, refuse his services to the 
sick, and not visit them in times of pestilence." 

Thereupon Dr. Martin Luther answered and 

" By all that is most sacred. No ! The preach- 
ers must not flee too readily, lest they make the 
people fearful, and they should come to disregard 
the priests, seeing that at such a time none will 
come to them. It is not good, on the other hand, 
that all should stay. 

" If the lot fell on me to stay, I would not shrink, 
nor fear. I have now survived three pestilences, 
and have been with many who have suffered ; but, 
thank God, I took no harm. I came home and 
stroked my little Margarethe on the cheek, with- 
out washing my hands. But I had forgotten, or 
I would not have done it. It would have been 
tempting God." 


ST. JEROME has written about the Book of 
Job ; but he wrote only thoughts, for he 
had not experienced the deepest temptations {i.e.y 
spiritual, not fleshly). If I could have preached 
in my sickness, I could have made many a beau- 
tiful sermon on temptation ; for then I learned 
to understand the Psalter and its consolations a 

THE good Paul had to suffer and see many 
things, as God says of him : ** / will show 
Jiini how great things he must suffer for My names 
sake!' He soon lays on his neck the Pati, — 
the yoke of suffering ; and he experienced it in- 
deed. Such heart-sorrow as is far worse than 
death. It is called martyrum interpretativtiin, 
martyrdom without blood, wherein we are indeed 
burned and tortured. 

Rewards of the Preachers. 

IF we are found true to our calling we shall 
receive honor enough ; not, however, in this 
life, but in the life to come. 

There we shall be crowned with the unfading 
crown of glory, as St. Paul says, which is laid up 
for us in heaven. But here on earth, saith the 
Lord Christ, we shall not have glory, for it is 
written : " Woe unto you when all men speak well 
of yo7C. 

For we do not belong to this life, but are called 
to another, and a far better. 


I will not be crowned on earth by men. 
I choose to have my recompense from God, the 
just Judge, in heaven. 

|3attaice as a llUapon. 

Patience is the best Virtue, 

IF thou wilt learn to overcome the greatest, 
fiercest, and most spiteful enemies, who 
would fain crush thee, and do thee all possible 
harm in body and soul, purchase before all things 
one weapon, and give all thou hast to learn how 
to exercise it. And know that it is one sweet, 
lovely little herb, which serves this purpose 
best, which is called Patientia. 

" Ah, " sayest thou, " how can I find this medi- 
cine ?" The answer is, " Take faith to thee, 
which says that no one can hurt thee unless God 
wills it. If evil comes to thee, it comes to thee 
from God's kind and gracious will. So that thy 
foe does himself a thousandfold greater hurt 
than thee." 

For from this faith flows love, which says : "I 
will still render good for evil, heap coals of fire 
on his head." This love is the Christian's armor 
and coat of mail, wherewith he casts down his 
foes, though they seem like great mountains, and 
are not to be cast down by iron and steel. This 
same love teaches us patiently to suffer all things. 


NO one does me hurt, but it will hurt him in 
the end ; for he has to die. I sin not in 
suffering, but he who makes me suffer, sins. 

Patience zvitli the Misled, and Anger against 
those who Mislead. 

ST. PAUL showeth towards the Galatians a 
fatherly and motherly affedlion, and speak- 
eth them very fair, and yet in such a sort that 
he reproveth them. 

Contrariwise, he is very hot and full of indig- 
nation against those false apostles their seducers ; 
he bursteth into plain thunderings and light- 
nings against them. 

This example must we also follow, that we 
may show ourselves to bear like affe6tion toward 
such as are misled. 

But as for the devil and his ministers, against 
them we ought to be impatient, proud, sharp and 
bitter, detesting and condemning their false 
jugglings and deceits with as much rigor and 
severity as may be. So parents, when their child 
is hurt with the biting of a dog, are wont to pur- 
sue the dog only ; but the weeping child they 
bemoan, and speak fair unto it, comforting it with 
the most sweet words. 



^t €l)urcl). 

As it stands in the third article of our faith, one holy catholic — that is, uni- 
versal — Church, the communion of saints." 

HE Church is an assembly of people 
that depends on things which do not 
appear, nor can be apprehended by 
the senses ; namely, on the Word 
alone. This people believes what the Word says, 
and gives God the glory of trusting that what He 
promises us therein is true. 


HE Church is never in a more perilous 
state than when she has quiet and peace. 

GOD has set His Church and Christian com- 
munity in the midst of the world, amid 
infinite external a6lion, manifold occupations. 


callings and standings, to the end that Christians 
should not be monks, nor fly into cloisters or 
wildernesses, but should live amongst people and 
be sociable, that their works of faith may be open 
and manifest. 

To live in society and friendship with each 
other, as Aristotle the heathen says, is not in- 
deed the end of man, whereunto he is created, 
but only a means to the end. 

The most excellent end for which we are 
created is that one should teach another about 
God, what He is in His being, what His will is, 
how He is minded towards us. 

Therefore let us in the Church, with the Church, 
pray for the Church. For there are three things 
which preserve the Church, and essentially belong 
to the Church : firstly, to teach faithfully ; sec- 
ondly, to pray diligently ; thirdly, to suffer really 
(mit Ernst). 

THE labor and travail of the Church lasts a 
long time ; but one day her day and hour 
will come, that she shall be redeemed, and joy- 
ful indeed will be her aspe6l then. 

THE outward form and aspe6l of the Church 
is without form or comeliness, sad and 
troubled ; but in truth she is triumphing and 
gaining the victory with Christ. " He has set 
us in the heavenly places together with Christ." 
As a bride is Domina and lady of her husband's 


possessions, so is a believer lord of all the pos- 
sessions of the Bridegroom ; for he is quickened 
with Christ, and set in heavenly places with Him. 
God looks not on the evil in His Church, but 
only on Christ, His dear Son, whom He holds so 
dearly beloved, that for that love's sake He sees 
no evil in His Bride, for " He has cleansed her 
through the washing of water, by the Word." 

Why the Church 07i Earth is in TribiUation. 

FIRSTLY, that we should be reminded and 
warned that we are exiled servants, cast 
out of Paradise on account of Adam's fall in 

Secondly, that we may think of the sufferings 
of the Son of God, who for our sake became 
man, took our flesh and blood on Him, yet with- 
out sin, has walked through this valley of sor- 
rows, has suffered and died for us, and has risen 
again from the dead, and has thus restored us to 
our Fatherland from which we were exiled. 

Thirdly, that such tribulation might teach and 
remind us that our citizenship is not of this 
world, but that we here on earth are only pil- 
grims, and that another life, the life eternal, re- 
mains to us. 

A^nara^ith a Type of the Chtirch. 

AMARANTH grows in August, and is more 
a stalk than a flower, is easily broken off, 


yet grows fair and flourishing after being broken. 
And when all the flowers are over, if this stalk 
is sprinkled with water and made moist it be- 
comes fair again and green, so that in winter 
wreaths and garlands can be twined of it. 

For this reason it is called amaranth, because 
it neither fades nor withers. 

I know not that anything can be more like the 
Church than this amaranth, which we call a 
thousandfold fair (Tausendschon). For although 
the church washes her robes in the blood of the 
Lamb (as it is written in Genesis and in the 
Apocalypse), and is stained crimson, yet she is 
fairer than any state or community on earth. 
And she alone it is whom the Son of God loves 
as His Bride, in whom He has joy and rest. 

Moreover, the Church suffers herself easily to 
be broken and crushed ; that is, she is willing 
and contented to be obedient to God under the 
Cross, is patient therein, and springs up again 
fair and flourishing, and grows and spreads, yea, 
gains her best fruits and uses thence, for thereby 
she learns truly to apprehend God, freely to con- 
fess His do61rine, and brings forth far more 
beautiful and heavenly virtues. 

Finally, the body and stock of this true Ama- 
ranth remain entire, and cannot be uprooted, 
however great may be the rage and assaults 
against particular branches, so as to rend them 
away. For as the amaranth, thousandfold fair, 
cannot fade nor decay, so nevermore can the 


Church fade nor decay, be destroyed or rooted up. 
But what is more wonderful than the amaranth ? 
If it is sprinkled with water and laid therein, it 
becomes green and fresh again, as if awakened 
from the dead. 

So, we can have no doubt that the Church 
will be awakened by God from the grave, and will 
come forth living, eternally to praise, glorify, and 
bless the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and 
His son our Redeemer and Lord, with the Holy 
Ghost. • 

For although other empires, kingdoms, princi- 
palities, and dominions have their changes, and 
soon fade and fall away like flowers, this King- 
dom, on the contrary, has roots so firm and deep, 
that by no force nor might can it be torn up or 
laid waste, but abides for ever. 

None Suffer Alone, 

WE are not alone. Many here and there in 
the world suffer with us, whom we 
know not. 

THE saints are but as dewdrops on the locks 
of the Bridegroom. 

HIS Christendom is Lady and Empress in 
heaven and on earth ; for she is called the 
Bride of God. 


IT would not be fit that we should know how 
earnestly the dear, holy angels contend for 
us with the devil ; what a hard and severe strife 
and warfare it is. For if we saw it, we should 
be dismayed. 

''" I ^HEY are ministering spirits," and herein is 
JL set before all good Christians a great and 
heart-cheering truth, and a mirror of humility, 
that such pure and glorious creatures minister 
to us impure, poor, insignificant human beings, 
in the home, in the state, in religion. 

Our faithful servants are they, rendering us 
service which we poor beggars and human crea- 
tures are ashamed to render another. 

Thus should it be taught simply, and in choice 
order, concerning the dear angels. 

THE good angels are wiser and can do more 
than the evil angels. The reason is, they 
have a mirror wherein they look and learn : " the 
face of the Father." 

THEY are far nobler than we men ; firstly, 
in nature and essence ; also because they 
are without sin. But they are without pride ; 
they despise not us human creatures for our 
misery. Our dying, sinning, and suffering are 
to them a sorrow of heart. 



THE nature of the good angels is a humble, 
loving, and kindly nature. An angel's is 
a fine, tender, kind heart. As if we could find 
a man who had a heart sweet all through, and a 
gentle will ; without subtlety, yet of sound rea- 
son ; at once wise and simple. He who has 
seen such a heart, has colors wherewith he may 
pidture to himself what an angel is. 

THEY guard us from evil. This they do 
earnestly and with joy. The angels see 
nothing more gladly than when people delight 
in the Word of God. There they delight to 
dwell. Therefore seek them not yonder in 
heaven, but here below on earth, with thy neigh- 
bor, thy father and mother, thy child and thy 
friend. If thou dost to these as God commands 
thee, the angels will not be far from thee. 


E was once asked what an angel was. He 
said, "An angel is a spiritual creature, 
created without a body, by God, to minister to 
Christendom, especially in the offices of the 
Church. True and godly preachers should 
preach and teach concerning them in an orderly. 
Christian way." 

THEIR antitypes are the evil spirits, which 
were not created evil by God, but fell, 
from a hatred which they conceived against 


DOCTOR MARTIN once said of the angels : 
" This is what I pi6lure to myself, and I 
stand on it as on sure ground, that the angels 
are already getting ready for the field, drawing 
on their armor, girding on their sword and spear ; 
for the Last Day is already beginning to dawn, 
and the angels are arming themselves for the 

IF we praise God that He has created for 
us the sun, the moon, wine, and bread, 
we should surely also praise Him that He has 
created the dear angels. My God, I thank Thee 
that Thou hast given Thy good angels, and hast 
set a guard of Thy heavenly princes round 
about us ! 

THE nature and chara6ler of the good angels 
is a humble, loving, friendly nature, which 
does not deem itself too high to serve poor sinful 
creatures, both men and women. For they are 
full of light, of the knowledge of God, and of 
the wisdom of the divine goodness. There- 
fore, all that God commands they understand 
to be perfect, and very good, because it pleases 

LET us follow the virtues of the holy angels, 
and their works of love, and be very 
friendly, loving, and helpful to each other. No 
man is so kind, and so ready, and disposed to all 


kinds of services and good works as the angels 

WE must learn that our best and most 
steadfast friends are invisible, namely, 
the dear angels, who with faithfulness and love, 
moreover with all helpfulness and true friendship, 
far surpass all the friends we have whom we can 
see. Thus in many ways we enjoy the fellow- 
ship of the heavenly spirits. 

ANGELS are creatures who shine and burn 
with thoughts and desires how God can 
be praised, peace be on earth, and all men be of 
a good heart and mind. 

His Belief about the Guardian Angel. 

FROM early childhood I would accustom a 
child, and say to it : " Dear child, thou 
hast an angel of thine own. When thou pray- 
est, morning and evening, the same angel will 
be with thee, and sit beside thy little bed, cloth- 
ed in a white robe ; will take care of thee, lull 
thee to sleep, and guard over thee that the evil 
one, the devil, may not come near thee. So, 
also, when thou gladly say est the 'Benedicite and 
' Gratiasl at thy meals, thine angel will be with 
thee, at table, will serve thee, and guard thee." If 
we pidlured this to children from their earliest 
years, that angels are with them, this would not 


only make the dear children trust to the guard- 
ianship of the dear angels, but it would make 
them gentle and good, for they would think, 
** If our parents are not here, the angels are 
here, and the evil one must not tempt us to 
do wrong." 

AT the last, when we die, we have the dear 
angels for our escort on the way. They 
who can grasp the whole world in their hands, 
can surely also guard our souls, that they make 
that last journey safely. 




HE serpent denies the good-will of 
God to us, and endeavors to per- 
suade that God does not mean us 

HE devil tempted Eve to all sin when he 
tempted her to resist the will of God. 

T/ie Devil the only Enemy to be hated. 

■^ ye do this t In no way better than by 
turning your eyes from the men who do you 
wrong, and fixing them on the wicked being who 
possesses them and urges them ; on seeing how 
you can avenge yourselves, and cool your cour- 
age on him. He has not flesh and bones. He 
is a spirit. Therefore, as saith St. Paul, it is not 
against flesh and blood that ye have to fight, but 


against that spiritual villain above in the air, 
against the ruler of this dark, blind world. 

WHEN it was once said to him, "I would 
fain know what the devil is like in char- 
a6ler," Dr. Martin said, " If you see the true 
likeness of the devil, and know what his char- 
a6ler is, give good heed to all the command- 
ments of God, one after another, and represent 
to yourself a suspicious, shameful, lying, despair- 
ing, abandoned, godless, calumnious man, whose 
mind and thoughts are all set on opposing God 
in every possible way, and working woe and harm 
to others. Thus you may see the chara6ler of 
the devil." 

FIRSTLY, in him is no fear, love, faith, 
and trust in God, that He is just, faithful, 
and true ; but utter hatred, unbelief, despair, and 

This is the devil's head set against the first 
commandment of the First Table. 

Secondly, a faithful Christian uses the name 
of God to good uses, spreads His Word, calls on 
Him from the heart in need, praises Him, confess- 
es Him. 

But this wicked man does exa6lly the contra- 
ry ; treats God's Word as a fable, blasphemes 
Him, curses men. There is the devil's mouth 
and speech. 

Thirdly, a Christian holds the office of the 


preacher dear, hears and learns God's Word with 
earnestness and diligence, receives the Holy Sac- 
rament according to Christ's order. The other 
does the contrary, despises the preacher's office, 
hears God's Word not at all or carelessly. This 
is the devil's way of hearing. 

Then for the Second Table. 

A true Christian honors and obeys, for God's 
sake, parents, magistrates, those who have the 
care of souls, masters and teachers. The other 
obeys not parents, serves and helps them not, 
nay, dishonors, despises, and troubles them, for- 
sakes them in their need, is ashamed of them 
when they are poor, despises them when they 
are old, infirm, and childish ; obeys not authori- 

Again, a man of true heart envies not his 
neighbor, bears no ill-will against him, desires 
not revenge, has compassion when he is hurt, 
helps and prote6ls him as much as he can. The 
other hates, envies, rejoices in his neighbor's 
troubles. There is the devil's grim, angry, and 
murderous heart. 

A God-fearing man lives temperately and 
chastely ; the other the contrary, in thought, 
word, and a6l. 

A good man maintains himself by labor, 
trade, etc., lends, helps, and gives to the needy. 
The other takes every advantage. These are 
the devil's sharp claws. 

Again, a good man speaks evil of no man — 


yea, even if he knows that his neighbor is guilty, 
he covers his sin with love. The other back- 
bites, cletra6ls, misinterprets, betrays. There is 
the devil's wicked will. 

As our Lord God is tJiesis decalogi, so is the 
devil antithesis decalogi. 

THE devil can indeed frighten, overwhelm, 
and kill ; God alone can comfort and make 
alive. And that is His own prerogative and 
work. Therefore we do not know God at all 
unless we know Him as a Comforter of the 
wretched, troubled, and distressed, a Helper in 
need, who makes living and joyful. The true 
knowledge of God is to know that God is not a 
devil, i. e., an accuser, an enemy, but only, en- 
tirely, and simply God, that is, only a Saviour. 

WE have more cause to rejoice than to 
mourn ; for our hope is in God, who says, 
" / live, and ye shall live also!' But melancholy 
is born with us ; so the spirit of melancholy, the 
devil comes and stimulates it ; but the Lord our 
God lifts us up. 

WHEN one is on the battle-field with the 
devil, and is fighting against him, it is 
not enough to say, " That is God's Word." For 
this is one of the devil's master-strokes, to 
snatch the weapon from our hands, especially 
when he takes us by surprise. This he has 


often tried on me. He knows that my heart is 
always praying the Lord's Prayer, and yet he 
vexes me with the temptation that I have ceased 
to pray. 

Let no one encounter him unless he prays 
the Lord's Prayer first. The devil is skilful, and 
we do not know the seven-hundredth part of 
what he knows. He has assailed Adam, Abra- 
ham, David, and others, and tormented them in 
manifold ways, and he knows where to attack us, 
where we are weak and he may give us a wound. 

The Apostle Judas who betrayed Christ was 
throughout his life little assailed by the devil ; 
but when the hour was come, he went securely 
forth on the devil's errand, and knew not 

IS highest art is to make a law out of the 
Gospel ; to represent the Lord Christ as a 
Judge and Accuser, and not as a Saviour, Medi- 
ator, High Priest, and Throne of Grace. 

THE devil has a great advantage against us, 
inasmuch as he has a strong bastion and 
bulwark against us in our own flesh and blood. 

THIS envious, poisonous, cunning spirit seeks 
to misinterpret and slander the good and 
godly works which a true Christian does through 
the grace of God, working and help of the Holy 

THE ENEMY. 1 1 5 

Spirit. Therefore he is called diabolus, that is, 
accuser and slanderer. 

AT night, when I wake, the devil is there, and 
wants to dispute with me. The evil one 
would dispute with me de justitid ; and he is 
himself a villain, and would cast God out of heav- 
en, and has crucified His Son. 

THE devil has not indeed a do6lor's degree, 
but he is highly educated and deeply ex- 
perienced, and has moreover been practising, 
trying, and exercising his art and craft now well- 
nigh six thousand years. No one avails against 
him but Christ alone. 

NO one can understand how to contend with 
him, unless he first pray with great ear- 
nestness. He is skilled in a thousand arts, and 
is far too strong and mighty for us, for he is the 
prince and god of this world. 

THE devil seeks high things, looks to that 
which is great and high ; scorns what is 
lowly. But the eternal merciful God reverses 
this, and looks on what is lowly. " I look on him 
who is poor and of a broken heart." But what is 
lifted up He lets go, for it is an abomination to 


THE devil, that lost spirit, cannot endure sa- 
cred songs of joy. Our passions and temp- 
tations, our complainings and our cryings, our 
Alas ! and our Woe is me ! please him well, but our 
songs and psalms vex him and grieve him sorely.. 

THE devil is a proud spirit. He cannot en- 
dure contempt. There is no better way 
to be quit of his temptations than by despising 
them (as Geroon says), just as when a traveller 
is attacked by a dog who would bite him ; if the 
traveller goes quietly by, lets the dog howl and 
bark, and takes no heed of him, the dog does not 
bite him, and soon ceases to bark. 

SATAN will not desist ; he will contest every 
article of the faith in our hearts ere we de- 
part this life, so bitterly opposed is he to the faith, 
which he well knows is the power and vi6lory 
wherewith we overcome the world. 

E have the great devils who are doc- 
tors of theology (enemies of the First 
Table of the Decalogue). The Turks and Papists 
have little, insignificant devils to contend with, 
which are not theological but only juristical 

THE devil gives heaven before sin, and after 
we have sinned drives us to dismay of con- 
science, and to despair. 

THE ENEMY. 1 1 / 

Christ does the contrary. He gives heaven 
after we have sinned, and peace to the troubled 

ONE single devil is stronger and more cun- 
ning than all men, for they know us with- 
in and without, and compared with him we are 
only to be reckoned alphabet-scholars, poor and 
weak sinners, as we learn from experience. 

FOR think only, if the devil in the beginning 
of the world was a bad creature, how cun- 
ning and skilful he must have become through 
such long praClice, during which he has been 
assailing, and with all his power, without ever 
ceasing, has been tormenting Adam, Methuselah, 
Enoch, Noah, Abraham, David, Solomon, the 
prophets, the Apostles, yea, the Lord Christ 
Himself, and all believers. 

THE devil has vowed our death. I hope, 
however, when he kills me, he will bite a 
deaf nut (/. e., the kernel will be gone). 

I SHOULD be so joyful that joy would bring 
me perfect health, and I could not be sick 
for mere joy. But the devil prowls incessantly 
about, makes me sad and careful, and when he 
cannot do it dire6ily, does it through means ; as 
for instance, through vexatious men. 


THIS white devil, which urges men to com- 
mit spiritual sins, to sell them for right- 
eousness, is far more dangerous than the black 
devil, which only tempts them to commit fleshly 
sins, which the world acknowledges to be sins. 

SATAN'S power is greater than that of 
twelve Turkish Emperors ; his knowledge 
greater than that of all men ; his wickedness than 
that of the worst men ; a powerful, able, sub- 
tle spirit. 

THE kingdom of this world, or the devil's 
kingdom, is the kingdom of iniquity, igno- 
rance, error, sin, death, blasphemy, desperation, 
and everlasting damnation. On the other side, 
the kingdom of Christ is the kingdom of equity, 
grace, light, remission of sins, peace, consolation, 
saving health, and everlasting life. 

IT is strange that it should be commanded 
us, such weak flesh and blood as we are, to 
strive and fight with such a powerful spirit as the 
devil is, and that no other weapons should be 
placed in our hands, save only God's Word. 
This must irritate and vex such a great and 
mighty foe. But in such combats the hard thing 
is to recognize the devil as the devil. 

God has ordered it thus, that when this mighty 
spirit is overcome simply by the faith of a good 
man, he may be all the more vexed and put to 

THE ENEMY. 1 19 

shame. That the " strong man armed " should 
be vanquished by one so weak, vexes him to the 

Warfare against all kinds of Evil — War- 
fare against the Devil 

I HOLD," he said, "that Satan sends epi- 
demics and sicknesses amongst men, for he 
is a prince of death. Therefore St. Peter saith, 
' Christ healed all who were held captive by the 
devil.' " To this end the devil uses natural 
means, poisonous air, &c., as a murderer uses a 
sword. So also God uses natural means to pre- 
serve man's health and life, as sleep and food. 

A physician mends and repairs for our Lord 
God ; he helps bodily, as we theologians spirit- 
ually, to make good what the devil has spoiled. 

Once a burgomaster asked me if it was con- 
trary to God to use medicine. (Doctor Carlstadt 
having publicly preached that in sickness we 
should use no medicine, but pray that God's will 
be done.) I asked him if he ate when he was 
hungry. " Yes," said he. Then I said to him, 
" Surely then you may use medicine, which is as 
much God's creature as food and drink, and all 
which we use to preserve this life." 

Luther s own Experience in such Co7iflicts. 

" T AST night," he said, " when I awoke, the 
J — y devil came and wanted to dispute with 


me, and cast it up at me that I was a sinner. 
Then I said : Say something new, devil That 
I know well already. I have committed real, 
a6lual sins. But God has forgiven me for His 
dear Son's sake." 

THE devil often casts up against me that 
great offences have sprung from my doc- 
trine. Sometimes he makes me heavy and sad 
with such thoughts. And when I answer that 
much good has also sprung thence, by a master- 
stroke, he can turn that against me. He is a 
swift, acute, cunning rhetorician. 

How Lttther met what he believed to be an 
Assault of the Devil. 

ONCE, in the year I52i,when I had jour- 
neyed from Worms, and was imprisoned 
near Eisenach, in the castle of the Wartburg (in 
Patmos), I was far from any one, in a chamber to 
which no one was allowed to come save two 
young boys of the nobility, who twice a day 
brought me food and drink. Once they had 
brought me a bag of hazel-nuts, of which from 
time to time I ate, and had locked it up in a 
chest. At night when I went to bed, I put out 
the light. Then the hazel-nuts began to rattle 
against each other. But I did not heed. How- 
ever, when I had been a little while asleep, such 
a clatter was made on the stairs, as if a score of 


platters had been thrown down from step to 
step, although I knew the staircase was guarded 
with chains and bolts, so that no one could come 
up. I rose and went to the head of the staircase 
and saw that all was closed. Then I said, " Oh, 
if it is only you, it does not matter." And I 
committed myself to the Lord Christ, of whom 
it is written, " Thou hast put all things under 
His feet," and lay quietly down in the bed again. 

THANK God, the devil has never been able 
altogether to vanquish me. He has burnt 
himself out on the Lord Christ. 



IN is essentially a departure from God. 


HE first freedom is freedom from sin. 

To Melanc/Uhon, from Cobourg, during the 
Diet of A tegs burg. 

WHAT can the devil do worse than to kill us } 
I conjure thee, who art in all other things 
a good soldier, fight also against thyself, thy 
greatest enemy, who turnest Satan's arms against 





have against us one-half of ourselves. 
The flesh striveth against the spirit. 

THE recognition of sin is the beginning of 

HELL is primarily forgetfulness, or hatred 
of God, for there reign a disordered, des- 
olate, chaotic carefulness and self-love, unable to 
see the goodness and mercy of God ; ever seek- 
ing escape and refuge from God. 

ORIGINAL sin is the perversion of original 

WHERE sin is not acknowledged, there is 
no help nor remedy ; for he who thinks 
himself whole when he is sick seeks no physician. 


IN is not forgiven that it may be no more felt, 
but that it may not be imputed. 

UNKNOWN, hidden sins are the most 
dangerous. Therefore the prophet says, 
" Cleanse me from my secret faults." 

THE sin against the Holy Ghost must be such 
a hidden, unacknowledged sin, not a coarse, 
worldly sin ; but a deep spiritual sin. It must 
be a hardening in evil, or a contending against 


what is known to be truth, persevered in, without 
repentance until the end. 

Especial Sins. 

IT is a godless opinion and a vain dream to say 
that all sins are alike. St. Paul's sins were 
very different from Nero's. 



I KNOW well that no prince is so good but 
that he may deal too hastily with some, 
through his officials. 

David was the kernel of all princes ever on the 
earth ; yet he did wrong to poor Mephibosheth, 
at the demand of Ziba ; thinking, however, that 
he had done him no wrong. 

A prince may be sure his rule will be marred 
by injustice ; well for him who does the least. 
Therefore are mercy and beneficence the more 

Give, and it shall be given unto you. Where 
Date is rich, there Dabitur will be the richer. 

Your Ele6loral Highness may be sure that I 
will not abandon this poor man thus. I will 
rather, myself, go begging for him. And if that 
did not answer, I would rob and steal whatever 
lay next me, especially from the Ele6lor of Sax- 
ony. For your Eledloral Grace is bound to main- 
tain him. 


To the Count Albert of Mans f eld 

(Luther's native Prince), warning him against oppressing his 


PEACE and grace in the Lord, and my poor 
Pater Noster. 

Your Grace will graciously listen to my poor 
sighs, if, on account of the speaking and crying 
which I hear daily concerning my poor country- 
men, I cannot begin my letter to your Grace 
cheerfully ; for it is no fault of mine, and the 
child's heart in me is wounded. Your Grace 
must surely feel how cold you have become, and 
given over to Mammon, thinking only how to 
grow very rich ; also (as the complaints go), bear- 
ing altogether too hard and sharply on your sub- 
je6ls, taking them from their fathers' inheritance, 
and their goods, and intending to make them 
mere bondmen. 

Which God will not suffer, or if He suffer it, 
He will also suffer the whole country to be im- 
poverished to utter ruin ; for all things are His 
gifts, which He can easily withdraw again ; and 
He is not bound to give account, as Haggai 
saith, " Ye have sown much, and bring in Uttle ; 
ye clothe you, but there is none warm ; and he 
that earneth wages, earneth wages to put it into 
a bag with holes." 

These things I write unto your Grace, as I 
think for the last time ; for the grave is nearer 
me now, perhaps, than people think, and I en- 

THE ENEMY. 1 2$ 

treat that your Grace will deal more softly and 
graciously with your subjedls, and let them 
abide ; so shall your Grace also abide, through 
God's blessing, here and yonder. Otherwise 
you will lose both together, and be like him of 
whom ^sop's fable speaks, who killed the goose 
which every day laid him a golden Q,g^^, and 
thereby lost at once the golden o,^^, with the 
goose, and all the ^%g stock ; — be like the dog 
in ^sop, who lost the piece of flesh in the water 
while he was snapping at the shadow. For 
certainly it is true, that he who will have too much 
gains less ; whereof Solomon in the Proverbs 
writes much. 

In brief, I have to do with your Grace's soul, 
which I cannot bear to have cast out of my care 
and prayer ; for this is to me sure : to be cast out 
of the Church is to be cast out of heaven. And 
hereto constrains me not only the command of 
Christian love, but also the heavy threat where- 
with God has laden us preachers (Ezekiel 3d) : 
" If thou warn not the sinner of his sin, and he 
die, I will require his soul at thine hands ; for 
therefore have I set thee to be a watchman of 

Therefore, may your Grace take this needful 
warning in good part ; for I cannot on your 
Grace's account suffer myself to be damned ; 
but seek much rather to save you with myself, 
if it is by any means possible. But before God, 
I am hereby free from guilt concerning this. 


Herewith I commend you to Him in all His 
grace and mercy. Amen. 



LIE is like a snow-ball. The longer it is 
rolled, the larger it is. 


MAMMON has two virtues ; the first, that 
he makes us secure when things go well, 
so that we live without the fear of God. 

The second, that in adversity, when things go 
ill, he teaches us to tempt and fly from God, and 
to seek a false god. 

IT was with good reason that God commanded 
through Moses that the vineyard and har- 
vest were not to be gleaned to the last grape or 
grain ; but something to be left for the poor. 
F'or covetousness is never to be satisfied ; the 
more it has, the more it wants. Such insatiable 
ones injure themselves, and transform God's 
blessings into evil. 

RICHES are the pettiest and least worthy 
gifts which God can give a man. What 
are they to God's Word } Yea, to bodily gifts, 
such as beauty and health ; or to the gifts of the 
mind, such as understanding, skill, wisdom ? 
Yet men toil for them day and night, and take 


no rest. Therefore our Lord God commonly 
gives riches to foolish people to whom He gives 
nothing else. 

JEROBOAM'S calves remain in the world 
forever until the Last Day ; for whatever 
a man places his confidence and trust in, set- 
ting God aside, that is to him like Jeroboam's 
calves, which he worships and invokes in- 
stead of the only true, living, eternal God, who 
alone can and will give counsel and help in all 

All are worshipping these calves who trust to 
their own skill, wisdom, strength, holiness, 
riches, honor, power, or to any league, defence, 
or fortress, or in brief to anything, be it called 
what it may, on which the world builds and 
trusts. For such trust in transitory creatures is 
the real idolatry. 

LLIES drowned and overwhelmed in the 
• sea of covetousness, deeper than the 
mountains under the flood ; these lay only fif- 
teen ells deep in the water, but she lies fifteen 
miles deep under the waves of avarice. 

THE Jews suffered themselves to dream, and 
thought that the kingdom of Christ would 
be a worldly kingdom ; as also the Apostles in 
John 14 : " Lord, how is it that thou wilt mani- 
fest Thyself unto us, and not unto the ivorld?" 


" We thought the whole world should see Thy 
glory ; that Thou shouldst be Caesar, and we 
twelve kings, amongst whom the kingdoms 
should be divided ; that each of us should have 
had six disciples for princes, counts, and nobles ; 
these would be the seventy-two disciples — for 
that was the number." Thus had the dear 
Apostles already beautifully parcelled out the 
land, according to Platonic dreams and human 

But Christ describes His kingdom far other- 
wise : ^^ He zvho lovetJi Me, and keepetJi my Word, 
shall be loved of my Father ; a7id we will come 
unto him, and make our abode with him'' 

IT is a terrible evil, that we see daily before 
our eyes, how eager a thirsty man is to drink, 
and a hungry man to eat, although a drink of 
water and a piece of bread can only keep off 
thirst or hunger an hour or two ; whilst on the 
contrary no one, or scarcely any one, is eager 
for this most precious Physician, although He 
tenderly allures all to Him, saying, " If any man 
tJiii'st, let him come nnto Me and drinkl' and 
gives food and drink which are imperishable, and 
endure to eternal life. 

WE know, thank God, that Christ has over- 
come the world, with her prince the devil ; 
that sin may no more have dominion over us, 
nor death swallow us up. At which we should, 

THE ENEMY. 1 29 

in reason, be far more joyful than the children 
of the world over temporal prosperity, riches, 
honor, power. For these, be they as much as 
they may be compared with the eternal riches 
which Christ gives, are indeed mere trifling, con- 
temptible fragments and crumbs. 

IF we have Him, the dear Lord, we are 
indeed rich and happy enough, and ask not 
for their pomp, glory, and wealth. Too often, in- 
deed, we lose Him, and consider not that He is 
ours, and we are His ; especially when, in time 
of need. He seems to hide His face for a moment. 
But He says, " / am with you alway to the end 
of the zuorlcV This is our best treasure. 

WHERE the Gospel is, there is poverty. 
In olden times men could richly endow 
whole convents ; now they will give nothing. 
Superstition, false do6lrine, and hypocrisy give 
money enough. Truth goes begging. 



Let the Lord build the house, and be the 
householder. He who filleth heaven and earth 
can surely fill one house. 

If thou dost not look to Him who should fill 
the house, every corner of it must indeed be 



empty to thee. But if thou art looking to Him, 
thou perceivest not if there be an empty corner. 
To thee all seems full, and indeed all is full. If 
not, it is the defect of thy vision, as with the 
blind, who see not the sun. 

Not that labor is forbidden, but that God gives 
success. For if thou wert to plough a hundred 
years, thou couldst not bring one stalk out of the 
earth. But God, without work of thine, whilst 
thou art asleep, creates out of the little grain a 
stalk, and on the stalk many ears, as many as He 

The animals do not work in order to earn 
their food ; yet each has its work. The bird flies 
and sings, and hatches its eggs ; that is its work. 
Horses carry men on the road, and to the bat- 
tle ; sheep give us wool, milk, and cheese ; that 
is their work ; yet that feeds them not. The 
earth freely brings forth grass and feeds them, 
through God's blessing. Thus Christ tells us to 
behold the fowls of the air ; they sow not, neither 
do they reap, nor gather into barns, and yet God 
feedeth them. That is, they do their appointed 
work, but not thereby are they fed. 

So also must man work. But let him know, 
it is Another that feeds him, namely, God bless- 
ing his work. 

This is the signification of it all. God com- 
manded Adam to eat bread in the sweat of his 
brow, and wills that men shall work, and with- 
out work will give them nothing. On the other 


hand, by our work, in itself, He gives us nothing, 
but only of His free goodness and blessing ; that 
labor may be our discipline in this life, to over- 
come the flesh. 

You say, Who places the silver and gold in the 
mountains, that men may find them ? Who places 
in the field those great hidden treasures which 
spring out of it in corn, wine, and all manner of 
fruits, whereby all creatures live ? Does man's 
labor create these ? Man's labor indeed finds 
them ; but God has laid the treasures there, and 
He bestows them. 

Thus the ruler must indeed watch over the 
city, close the gates, guard tower and wall, put 
on armor, lay up stores, as if there were no God. 
And the householder must work as if his work 
in itself were to nourish the household. But he 
who believes in God is not careful for the mor- 
row, but labors joyfully and with a great heart. 

" For He giveth His beloved, as in sleep." 
They must work and watch, yet never be careful 
or anxious, but commit all to Him, and live in 
serene tranquillity ; with a quiet heart, as one 
who sleeps safely and quietly. 

(The last letter to her but one.) 

To the holy, care-laden lady, Katharin 
Lutherin, my gracious , dear Wife. 

WE thank you very heartily for the great care 
for us, which has prevented your sleep- 


ing ; for since the time that you have taken this 
care on you, the fire all but consumed us in our 
inn, breaking out outside our chamber door, and 
yesterday (no doubt in consequence of these 
cares of yours), a stone all but fell on our head 
and crushed us, as in a mouse-trap ; for in our 
room, two days since, the lime and plaster 
crumbled away. * * For this also we should 
have had to thank your saintly cares, if the dear 
holy angels had not hindered. I am anxious 
lest, if thou dost not give up thy anxieties, 
the earth itself may swallow us up, and all the 
elements turn against us. 

Dost thou learn the Catechism, and the Creed .^ 
Do thou pray, and leave God to care. It is said, 
" Cast your care on Him^for He careth for you!' 

Scmptatton, anlJ Depression of Spirit. 

For one heavy in Heart. 

FIRST of all, let her not look at herself, nor 
judge herself by her own feelings, but 
grasp the Word, and hang upon it, and plant her- 
self on it, in defiance of all, and dire6l all her feel- 
ings, and all the thoughts of her heart towards it- 
Let her also lift up her voice in praise. A 
strong medicine lies therein. 

For the evil spirit of heaviness is not to be 
chased away by sad words and complainings, but 


by the praise of God, whereby the heart is made 

YOUR distress is, that God Almighty knows 
from eternity who will be saved. Which is 
true ; for he knows all things, the drops in the 
sea, the stars in heaven, the roots, branches, 
twigs, and leaves of every tree. He has num- 
bered the hairs of our heads. From this you 
conclude that do what you will, good or bad, 
God knows already whether you will be saved 
or not. And further, you think more of dam- 
nation than of salvation, and therfore you despair, 
and know not how God is minded toward you. 

Wherefore I, as a servant of my dear Lord 
Jesus Christ, write you this, that you may know 
how God the Almighty is minded toward you. 

God, the Almighty, does know all things ; so 
that all works and thouofhts in all creatures 
must happen according to His will. But His 
earnest will, and mind, and decree, ordered from 
eternity, is " tJiat all men shall be saved',' and 
shall become partakers of eternal joy. " God 
\cilletJi not tJie death of a sinner^ but that he 
sJionld be converted and live'' 

If, therefore. He wills that sinners, wherever 
they live and wander under the broad, high 
heavens, should be saved, will you, by a foolish 
thought suggested by the devil, sunder yourself 
from all these, and from the grace of God } 

God the Father Himself, with His own finger, 


points out to you how He is minded toward 
you, when with loud clear voice He cries, '* This 
is my beloved Son t7i WJiom I am well pleased. 
Hear Him!' 

And even if you were ever so hard and deaf, 
and as a despairing man turned to stone, could 
not look up to heaven, nor hear God the Father 
calling to you on those heights, yet can you 
not fail to hear the Son, who stands in the 
highway by which every one must pass, and 
as with a mighty trumpet calls, " Ve7iite!" 
" Come, come ! " 

But who are those who are to come ? " Ye that 
are weary and heavy-laden!' What kind of a 
company is that ? " Heavy-laden ; " as if He 
knew it all well, and would take our burdens and 
loads on His shoulder, and not only help us, but 
altogether rid us of them. 

To Hieroiiymus Welter, 


THEREFORE, before all things, thou shalt 
firmly hold, that those and evil thoughts 
are not from God, but from the devil ; because 
God is not the God of sadness, but the God of 
consolation and gladness, as Christ Himself says, 
" He is not the God of the dead but of the living!' 
But what is to live save to be glad in the Lord ? 

WHEREFORE use thyself at once to re- 
pel such thoughts, saying, " The Lord 


hatli not sent theer Hard is the fight at the 
beginning ; but use makes it easier. It is not 
thou alone who endureth such thoughts, but all 
the saints ; yet they have fought and conquered. 
So also thou, yield not to evil, but go forth brave- 
ly. The highest valor in this fight is not to look 
at these thoughts nor to investigate them, but to 
disperse them like a flock of geese, and to pass 
by. He who has learnt this has conquered ; he 
who has not learnt it will be conquered. For 
to gaze at them, and dispute with them until 
they cease, or freely yield, is but to irritate and to 
strengthen them. 

Let Israel be an example to thee, who over- 
came the fiery serpents, not by gazing or by 
struggling, but by averting their gaze, and look- 
ing at the brazen serpent. This is the true and 
certain vi6lory in this combat. Therefore take 
heed, my Jerome, that thou suffer them not to 
linger in thy heart. Thus a certain wise man 
replied to one so tempted, who said " Such and 
such sad thoughts have come into my mind," by 
saying, " Then let them go again." And another, 
as a wise oracle said, " Thou canst not prevent 
the birds from flying above thy head ; but thou 
canst prevent their building their nests in thy 


To Barbara Lischnerinn. — 1530. 

IRTUOUS dear Lady : — Your dear brother, 
Hieronymus, Weller has told me how you 


are troubled with temptations about the eternal 
foreseeing of God. That is truly grievous to me. 
Christ, our Lord, will redeem you from this. 

For I know this sickness well, and have lain 
sick to eternal death in that hospital. 

First, you must grasp firmly in your own heart 
that such thoughts come from the devil and are 
his fiery darts. 

Secondly, when such thoughts come, you 
should ask yourself " In what commandment is 
it written that I should think of these things ; 
Thou, O devil, wouldst have me care for myself, 
but I must cast my care on God, for He careth 
for me." 

Among all the commands of God, this is the 
highest that we should pidlure to ourselves His 
dear Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, Who is to our 
hearts the daily and most excellent mirror where- 
in we see how dear God holds us. 

Here we learn God's Providence, by believing 
in Christ. If you believe, you are called ; if you 
are called, you are also predestinated. Let none 
tear Christ, this mirror and throne of grace, from 
your heart. 

TO the heavy temptations concerning eternal 
ele(5lion which so deeply distress many, no- 
where is such a solution to be found as in the 
Wounds of Christ. " TJiis is My beloved Son ; 
hear Him, In Him you will find Who and what 


I am, and what I will ; and nowhere else in 
heaven or on earth." 

The Father has fixed a sure and firm founda- 
tion on which we can firmly rest — Jesus Christ 
our Lord, through Whom we must enter the 
Kingdom of Heaven. For He, and none else, is 
the Way, the Truth, and the Life. 

To Vale7itine Hatisinami. — 1532. 
HAVE heard of your heaviness through in- 
ward terrors ; but you must not distress 
yourself much on this account ; for God is won- 
derful in His way toward us, so that things 
seem to us often bad and hurtful which are really 
most useful to us, although we understand not 
how. Who knows what worse might have come 
to you, if God had not thus taken you under His 
discipline, and kept you in His fear 1 Therefore 
you must not be impatient although your faith 
be not strong. For St. Paul says the weak in 
faith are not to be rejefted. God is not a Father 
who casts out sick and diseased children. If He 
were. He would keep none. Therefore you 
should say to Him, " Dear Father, if it pleases 
Thee thus to chastise me, I will be content to 
have it so. Thy will be done ; only give me 

For the rest, I know not how you are meeting 
this ; for you should be calling on God and pray- 
ing ; especially when you feel the terror is com- 
ing, fall on your knees and cry to heaven ; and 


although the prayer seem to you in vain, and too 
cold, do not for that give over. Strike a firm 
stroke, and pray so much the more earnestly, the 
more it seems to you in vain. 

For you must learn to fight and not to keep 
still and gaze, or suffer whatever this temptation 
infli6ls, until it ceases of itself For that way 
will only gain strength. You must pray mightily, 
and call aloud, and with ringing words cry out 
the Our Father. 

And before all things you have to grasp in 
your heart the convi6tion that this is from the 
devil, whom God will have us resist. 

But if, indeed, you cannot pray, let something 
be read to you from the Psalms or the New Tes- 
tament, with a clear voice ; and listen to it. 
For you must use yourself, at such times, not to 
wrestle with the anguish in your own thoughts, 
without God's Word ; you should hear the voice 
of prayer and God's Word together. 

For without God's Word the foe is too strong 
for us. But prayer and the Word of God he 
cannot endure. 

To Jonas von Stockhausen. — 1532. 

IT has been shown me by good friends how 
the malignant enemy is assailing you sorely 
with weariness of life, and longing for death. 

You know we must be obedient to God, and 
diligently guard ourselves against disobedience 
to His will. Now you are sure God has given 


you life, and has not yet willed you to be dead. 
Therefore you can have no doubt that such diso- 
bedient thoughts come from the devil ; and that 
with all your might you must tear them out. 

Life was sour and bitter to our Lord Christ ; 
yet He would not die except by the Father's will, 
and fled from death and held to life whilst He 
could, and said, " My hour is not yet come!' 

Elias, indeed, and Jonas, and other prophets, 
called and cried for death, from great anguish and 
impatience of life ; cursed even the day of their 
birth. Yet they had to live and bear this weari- 
ness with all their strength, until their hour was 

Such words and examples as the Holy Ghost's 
words and warnings you must faithfully follow, 
and the thoughts which drive you thence you 
must cast out and spit upon. And although this 
may be sour and bitter to do, you should but 
think of yourself as one bound and held captive 
with chains, out of which you must twist and 
writhe yourself, with sweat of anguish. For the 
devil's darts, when they pierce so deep, are not to 
be torn out with laughter, or without labor. 
They must be wrenched out by main force. You 
must gnash your teeth against these thoughts, 
and set your face as a flint to do God's will, 
harder than iron or anvil. 

Yet the best counsel of all is that you should 
scorn these temptations, and make as if you did 
not feel them, and think of something else, and 


say to the devil, " Come, then, devil ! let me 
alone ! I cannot listen to thy thoughts. I have 
to travel, eat, drink, ride, or do this or that." 

Herewith I commend you to our dear Lord, the 
only Saviour and true Conqueror, Jesus Christ. 

To the Lady von Stockhausen. 

THE devil is an enemy to both you and your 
husband, because you hold Christ, his 
enemy, dear. 

See that you do not leave your husband a 
moment alone. Solitude is pure poison for him. 
It would do no harm to read to him histories, 
news, and all kinds of strange things, even if 
they were gloomy or false tidings and tales, 
about the Turks, Tartars, and the like, if he 
could be made to laugh and jest about it. And 
thereon soon follow with comforting words of 
the Scriptures. 

Whatever you do, do not let him be alone or 
dull, so that he sink into thought. Never mind 
if he is angry at this. Pretend that you are 
suffering, and complain about it. 

Christ, who is the cause of the devil's enmity 
and your heart-trouble, will help you. Only hold 
fast to this, that you are the apple of His eye. 
Who touches you touches Him. 


To yohann Schlaginhausen. — 1533. 

HEAR with pain that you are sometimes 
troubled in mind, although, indeed, Christ is 


as near to you as yourself, and will surely do 
you no harm, since He has shed His blood for 
you. Dear friend, give honor to this good, faith- 
ful Man, and believe that He holds you dearer, 
and has more favor to you than Do6lor Luther, 
and all Christians. 

What you trust us to be, trust Him to be far 

For what we do, we do at His bidding. But 
He who bids us do it. Himself does all unbid- 
den, from His own spontaneous goodness and 

To yoachim^ Prince of An halt- — 1534. 

WE know not what we should pray for as 
we ought, but He, as a faithful Father, 
knows and sees well how we should pray, and 
does according to what He knows, not according 
to how we pray. 

Thus indeed a father must deal with his child, 
not giving what the child asks, but what he 
knows the child should ask. Although the child 
weeps for it, that does not hurt him ; nor is the 
child's request less dear to the father because 
he does not give in the way the child desires. 

So also, often, the physician must not do what 
the patient wishes, and yet he holds the sick 
man none the less dear for his sick longings and 
for the request he cannot grant. 


I counsel you also (as a remedy against this 
depression) to ride, hunt, and occupy yourself as 
a young man should, in good company, who can 
be merry with you in a godly and honorable 

To yohann Mantel^ 


AS to what you write about temptation and 
sadness on account of death, you know 
how in our faith we express and confess that the 
Son of God suffered under Pontius Pilate, was 
crucified and died to this end, that He might, 
for all who believe in Him, take away the power 
from death, yea altogether and utterly abolish it. 
Dear friend, what great matter is it that we shall 
die, when we really think that He, the dear Lord 
has died, and has died for us ? His death is the 
true, only death which should so possess and fill 
our hearts, senses and thoughts, that it should 
henceforth be to us no otherwise than as if now 
nothing was living any more, not even the dear 
sun, but that all died with the dear Lord ; yet 
died in such a way that all with Him shall rise 
again at that blessed day. 

In this His death and life, our death and life 
should sink and be swallowed up, as those who 
shall live with Him forever. 

And truly from the beginning of the world He 
has been before us with His death ; and to even 

THE ENEMY. 1 43 

the end of the world. He waits for us when we 
shall depart out of this brief, poor life, and He 
shall welcome us and receive us into His eternal 


To a Pastor. 

ALAS, we live in the kingdom of the devil, 
ab extra, therefore we cannot hear or see 
any good, ab extra. But we live in the blessed 
Kingdom of Christ ab intra. There we see, 
though as in a glass darkly, the exceeding unut- 
terable riches of the grace and glory of God. 

Therefore, in the name of the Lord, let us break 
through, press forward, and fight our way through 
praise and blame, through evil report and good 
report, through hatred and love, until we come 
into the blessed kingdom of our dear Father, 
which Christ the Lord has prepared for us before 
the beginning of the world. There only shall 
we find joy. Amen. 

GOD forbid that the offence of the Cross 
should be taken away ; which thing would 
come to pass if we would preach that which 
the prince of this world and his members would 
gladly hear. Then we should have a gentle 
devil, a gracious pope, and merciful princes. 
But because we set forth the benefits and the 
glory of Christ, they persecute us and spoil us 
both of our goods and lives. 


I DID not learn my theology all at once ; but 
I have had to search ever deeper and deeper 
into it. To this many confli61s have brought 
me, for no one can understand the Holy Scrip- 
tures without exercise and confli6l. Fanatics 
and pretenders, each the true adversary, namely 
the devil, who with his bufFetings drove me to 
study the Holy Scriptures. If we have no such 
devil, we are only speculative theologians, who 
rove about in their own thoughts, speculating 
that thus and thus it must be. 

Yet no good art or handicraft is to be learned 
without exercise. What kind of a physician 
would he be who perpetually did nothing but 
roam about the schools } He must bring his 
art into pra6lice, and the more he has to do with 
nature, the more he sees and experiences how 
imperfe6l his art is. 

It is a great grace of God to be able to say of 
one text in the Bible, " That I know for certain 
to be true." 

I know, old and learned Do6lor that I am (or 
ought to be), that I have not yet mastered the 
Lord's Prayer. Without exercise and experience 
no one can become truly learned. 

THIS will not be thy greatest nor thy last 
temptation. The wisdom of God is, as it 
were, playing with thee and training thee, if thou 
lives t, for real war. 


IT is a hard thing to say always, I am God's 
child ; and to be comforted and refreshed by 
the great grace and mercy of the heavenly 
Father. To do this from the heart is not what 
every one can do. Therefore, without exercise 
and experience, no one can learn the faith in true 

THE Holy Spirit cheers us, and teaches us 
to despise death and all dangers. He says 
(in us), " If God wills not that I should live, then 
I will die ; if He wills not that I should be rich, 
I will be poor." But the evil spirit saddens and 
terrifies, at the last, after making secure and self- 
satisfied. Joyfulness comes from God, depres- 
sion from the devil. 

CONFLICT makes us live in the fear of 
God, walk circumspe611y, pray without ceas- 
ing, grow in grace and in the knowledge of 
Christ, and learn to understand the power of the 

Therefore be not faint-hearted, nor dismayed ; 
but take such confli6ls for a sure sign that thou 
hast a gracious God, since thou art being fash- 
ioned into the likeness of His Son ; and doubt 
not that thou belongest to the great and glorious 
brotherhood of all the Saints, of whom St. Peter 
says, " Resist the devil, steadfast in the faith, 
knowing that the same afflictions are accom- 
plished in your brethren which are in the world." 



THE essence of temptation is that we forget 
the present, and covet the future, like Eve 
in Paradise. 

ALL do not suffer the same temptations. In- 
deed they could not. Some must be 
knuckles and bones which can sustain and keep 
together the flesh. Just as in the body of man, 
if all were flesh it would fall into a shapeless 
mass. The knuckles and nerves hold the flesh 
together. So, in the Christian Church, there 
must be some who can sustain good bufletings 
from the devil ; such as we three, Philip Melanch- 
thon. Doctor Pommer, and I. But all could not 
bear it. Therefore, in the Church we pray one 
for another. Prayer does all things. 

DOCTOR MARTIN said to Schlainhaeffen, 
" Fear not, neither be dismayed. All will 
turn to the best for you ; your trial will work for 
God's' glory, and for the profit and health of us 

" It is impossible that man's heart can know 
God truly and keep Him in mind without the cross 
and temptation. Believe me, if you had not such 
a good stone in God the Father's house, you would 
not have these confli6ts." 

ONLY believe firmly God will make an end 
of this trial. For He calls that which is 
not, that it may be. As I have myself experienced 

THE ENEMY. 1 47 

in sore temptations, which so exhausted and 
tortured my body that I could scarcely breathe, 
went about like a shadow, like a corpse, withered, 
parched up, and no man could comfort me. 
All to whom I spoke, said " I know not." No 
confessor could understand anything of it, so that 
I said, "Am I, then, alone .'^ Is it I only who 
must be thus sorrowful in spirit and thus 
assailed .'* " 

Dr. Staupitz said to me at table, seeing me so 
sad and smitten down, "Why are you so sad, 
brother Martin t " Then I said, " Whither shall 
I flee t " He answered, " Ah ! know you not 
that such temptation is good for you } Otherwise 
no good could come of you." 

Ten years ago, when I was alone, God com- 
forted me through His dear angels, with my own 
striving and writing. 

Therefore fear not ; you are not alone. 

BISHOP ALBERT of Mainz used to say that 
" the human heart is like a mill-stone in a 
mill. If you place corn on it, it spins round, 
grinds, and crushes, and makes it into meal. If 
there is no corn it still spins round, and grinds 
itself, so that it becomes thinner and smaller. 
So the human heart must have work to do ; if 
it has not the work of its calling to fulfil, 
the devil comes with temptation, heaviness, 
and sadness, till the heart devours itself with 


In his own Sickness. 

" A H, how gladly would I now die. For I am 
xjl now weary and worn out, and have a 
peaceful and joyful conscience and heart. But I 
know, as soon as I recover, care, toil, and tempta- 
tion will not keep outside. For through much 
tribulation we must enter into the Kingdom of 

IN the year 1538, on the night of the 2d of 
August, Do6lor Martin Luther had a severe 
pain in his arm, as if it were being torn. Then 
he said, " Thank God ! That we can say, for it is 
an easier thing to yield up our money, or our 
skin. But when spiritual temptations come, that 
we could say, ' Cursed be the day wherein I was 
born ! ' that does give pain ! In such trial was 
Christ, in the Garden : ' Father take this cup from 
Me ! ' There was the will against the will." 

DOCTOR MARTIN once said to a very 
desponding man, " Oh, friend, what art 
thou doing } Canst thou do nothing but look at 
thy sins, thy death, and damnation 1 Turn thine 
eyes quite the opposite way, and look at Him 
who is called Christ. Of Him it is written that 
He was conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of 
the Virgin Mary, suffered, died, and was buried, 
descended into hell, on the third day rose again 
from the dead, ascended into heaven. Why, 


dost thou think, did all this happen ? That thou 
mightest be comforted against death, and sin. 
Therefore cease to fear and to be dismayed. 
Verily thou hast no cause. If Christ were not 
there, and had not done all this for thee, then 
indeed thou mightest fear." 

SEE what a life the Lord Christ led whilst 
He went about on earth. He was not 
much alone ; there was ever a noise and stir 
of much people around Him. He was never 
alone, save when He was praying. So He has 
promised, ''Where two or three are gathered 
together in My name, there am I in the midst 
of them." 

KING DAVID, when he was alone and idle, 
and went not forth to the war, fell into 
temptation. God created man for society, and 
not for solitude. 

DR. LUTHER said that often when he was 
tempted, a word from a good friend had 
comforted him: "For when, in the year 1535, I 
was much troubled about something, and cast 
down, Do6lor Pommer said to me, ' Our Lord 
God doubtless thinks in heaven, " What shall I 
do more with this man.? I have given him so 
many great and noble gifts, and still he will de- 
spair of my goodness." ' 

" These words were a glorious, great comfort 


to me, and took fast hold of my heart, as if 
an angel from heaven had spoken them to me, 
although Dr. Pommer thought not to comfort me 
with them." 

IN the year 1541 Do6lor Luther was recalling 
his spiritual temptation in his sickness, when 
for fourteen days he neither ate, drank, nor slept. 
*' At that time I disputed with our Lord God in 
wild impatience, and reproached Him with His 
promises. Then God taught me to understand 
the Holy Scriptures aright ; for when all goes 
according to our will we do not know much of 
God's Word. Now God will not have us be 
too impatient ; therefore in His Holy Scriptures 
He requires us frequently to hope and wait on 
Him, as in the Psalm, * I wait on the Lord from 
one morning watch to another.' For if God 
does not help speedily, yet He gives grace to 
sustain temptation. So Job says, ' Though He 
slay me I will trust in Himl just as if he said, 
'■ Though it seems as if Thou hadst turned away 
Thy face from me, yet I will never believe Thou 
art my enemy.' " 

A NUN, who was sorely tempted, and had no 
other weapons wherewith to drive away 
the devil, said, " I am a Christian ; that word 
contains everything in itself" 

GOD has set a firm ground for us to tread 
on, and thereby to ascend into heaven, 


even Jesus Christ. He only is the way and 
door by which we come to the Father. But we 
want to begin our building with the roof; we 
despise the foundation, and therefore we must 

AH, if that great man, Paul, were living now, 
how glad I should be to learn from him 
what his thorn in the flesh was. It was not a 
beloved Thekla, as the legends say. Oh no! It 
was not a sin. I know not what it was. 

The Book of Job is full of such temptations. 
His friends and comforters were sensible, pru- 
dent, wise, just, and pious people ; yet they did 
not touch the point. For around this turns the 
whole debate in the book. " I am just and inno- 
cent," says Job. They say, on the contrary, 
"Ah! that is of the devil, to say that thou art 
good and just. Then God must be unjust!" 
Round this question revolves the whole contro- 
versy. I hold that the Book of Job is a history, 
afterward worked into a poem, concerning things 
which were adlually experienced by some one ; 
although not uttered in the words in which it 
is described. 

It is a good book, and therein we have a 
choice picture and example of an assaulted and 
troubled Christian. For this book was not writ- 
ten with reference to Job, or any individual, but 
is a mirror for all suffering Christians. We see 
in it what kind of a process God is carrying on 



through the trials of the Saints. For when it 
is only the devil and the Chaldeans, Job can be pa- 
tient, and says, ''Blessed be the name of the 
Lord." But when it is a question of God's an- 
ger, he can no longer bear it, and falls into per- 
plexity and disputing about the happiness of 
the ungodly. 

But he worked his way out of this perplexity 
again and said, " I know that Thou art good." 
Although it is hard to say it. In brief, all men 
have flesh and blood in them which murmurs 
and sets itself against God ; for it is hard to be- 
lieve, when we are in trial, that God is gracious 
to us. 

Part ^econtr. 






OR the rest, I am expeaing daily the 
malecUaions of Rome. I am dispos- 
ing and arranging all things, so that 
when these arrive I may go forth pre- 
pared and girded ; like Abraham not knowing 
whither, or rather knowing most certainly whith- 
er, since God is everywhere. — 1518. 

WHAT a beautiful, comforting Gospel that 
is in which the Lord Christ depi6ls 
Himself as the Good Shepherd ; showing what 
a heart He has toward us poor sinners, and 
how we can do nothing to save ourselves. 

The sheep cannot defend nor provide for it- 


self, nor keep itself from going astray if the shep- 
herd did not continually guide it ; and when it 
has gone astray and is lost, it cannot find its way 
back again nor come to its shepherd ; but the 
shepherd himself must go after it, and seek it 
until he find it ; otherwise it would wander and 
be lost forever. And when he has found it he 
must lay it on his shoulder and carry it, lest it 
should again be frightened away from himself, 
and stray, or be devoured by the wolf. 

So also is it with us. We can neither help 
nor counsel ourselves, nor come to rest and peace 
of conscience, nor escape the devil, death, and 
hell, if Christ Himself, by His word, did not fetch 
us, and call us to Himself. And even when we 
have come to Him, and are in the faith, we can- 
not keep ourselves in it, unless He lifts and car- 
ries us by His Word and power, since the devil 
is everywhere and at all times on the watch to 
do us harm. But Christ is a thousand times 
more wilHng and earnest to do all for His sheep 
than the best shepherd. 

Not at our ow7z Will, 

I CANNOT guide myself, and yet would fain 
guide the world ! Many a time I have made 
fine articles and rules, and brought them to our 
Lord God to guide Him. But the good God has 
let me see in the end how all my mastering has 
come to nothing. 


Not at our ozu7t Pace, 

THIS temptation oftentimes excuseth the god- 
ly, that their Ufe seemeth unto them to be 
rather a certain slow creeping than a running. 
But if they abide in sound do6lrine and walk in 
the spirit, let this nothing trouble them. God 
judgeth far otherwise. 

For that which seemeth unto us to be very slow, 
and scarcely to be creeping, is running swiftly in 
God's sight. Again, that which is to us nothing 
else but sorrow, mourning, and death, is before 
God joy, goodness, and true felicity. 

The Word of God as Daily Bread, 

ALTHOUGH the works of God are not 
dumb, but pi6ture Him to our eyes that 
we may see Him, yet He comforts us far more 
powerfully when He adds to His works a living 
Word, which the eyes do not see, but the ears 
hear, and the heart, through the inworking of 
the Holy Spirit, understands. 

" The Divine Art of Learningr 

I ALTHOUGH I am an old Dodor of the 
, Holy Scriptures, have not yet come out of 
the children's lessons ; and do not yet rightly un- 
derstand the Ten Commandments, the Creed, and 
the Lord's Prayer. I cannot study or learn them 
through and through, but I am learning daily 


therein ; and I pray the Catechism with my son 
Hans, and with my little daughter Magdalene. 

When, indeed, do we understand in its breadth 
and depth the first words of the Lord's Prayer, 
" Who art in heaven " f For if I understood and 
believed these few words, that God, who has cre- 
ated heaven and earth, and all creatures, and has 
them in His hand and power, is my Father, then 
would follow this sure conclusion, that I should 
also be a lord of heaven and earth ; that Christ 
should be my brother, and all things be mine. 
Gabriel must be my servant, and Raphael my 
guide, and all angels must minister to me in my 

But now, that my faith may be exercised and 
preserved, my Father in heaven lets me be 
thrown into a dungeon, or fall into the water. 
In such trials we see and experience how far we 
understand these words, how our faith totters, 
and how great our weakness is. 

Therefore, the one little word, " Thine'' or 
" Ourl' is the hardest word in the Holy Scrip- 
tures, as is to be seen in the first Command- 
ment, " / a7n the Lord thy God^ 

TO fathom and truly to exhaust one single 
word in the Holy Scriptures is impossi- 
ble. I defy all learned men and theologians to 
do it. 

For they are the words of the Holy Spirit ; 
therefore they are too high for all men ; and we 


new-born Christians have only the first-fruits, 
not the tithe. 

I have many times thought of commenting on 
the Ten Commandments, but when I have only 
begun with the first word, which sounds thus, 
" / am the Lord thy God,'' I have stopped short 
at the little word "/." And not yet can I under- 
stand that " I." 

OH, my Lord God, the Holy Scriptures are not 
so easily understood, even when one reads 
them diligently. Let us learn well these three 
words, and ever remain learners before them : to 
love, fear, and trust God. 

BEFORE a man can truly understand the 
first word in Genesis, " lit the beginning- 
God created the lieavens and the earth,'' he dies. 
If he lived a thousand years he would not learn 
those words through and through. 

MY best and Christian counsel is, that all 
should draw from this spring or well- 
head ; that is, should read the Bible dihgently. 
For he who is well grounded and exercised in 
the text will be a good and perfe6l theologian ; 
since one saying or text from the Bible is better 
than many glosses and commentaries, which 
are not strong and sound, and do not stand the 
enemy's thrust. 


THE Bible is a very large, wide forest, where- 
in stand many trees, of all kinds, from 
which we can gather many kinds of fruits. For 
in the Bible we have rich consolation, do6lrine, 
instru61ion, exhortation, warning, promises, and 
threatenings. But in all this forest there is not 
a tree which I have not shaken, and broken off 
at least a pair of apples or pears from it. 

CABALA was good until Christ ; but now 
that Christ has come, and His grave 
stands open, all that is over. Our fanatics say 
that much is still dark in the Holy Scriptures, 
and not yet manifest. That is false, and not 
true ; for the sepulchre is open, and Christ has 
come forth into the light. Therefore, whoso- 
ever knows Christ truly is a master in the Holy 
Scriptures, and remains a master. 

N this Book thou findest the swaddling- 
clothes, and the manger wherein Christ is 
laid. Thither the angels dire6led the shepherds. 
These swaddling-clothes may indeed be poor 
and little ; but precious is Christ, the treasure 
laid therein. 

ONCE when Jeit Dietrich said to the Doc- 
tor, in reference to heresies, " It would 
be better to pray not to be learned in the Holy 
Scriptures than to be learned in them," Do6lor 
Luther answered, " No, no ! we might as well 
pray that there should be no gold in the world, 


or no sun in the world ; because without the 
sun many crimes could not be committed. 

It is an abominable slander against the Holy 
Scriptures, and against all Christendom, to say 
that the Holy Scriptures are obscure. There 
never was written on earth a clearer book than 
the Holy Scriptures ; compared with all other 
books, it is as the sun to all other light. 

Let none tempt you away from the Scriptures. 
For if you step out of these you are lost ; your 
enemies lead you whither they will. But if you 
keep to them you have overcome, and will heed 
their raging no more than the rock heeds the 
waves and billows of the sea. 

Only be certain and doubt not that nothing is 
clearer than the sun, that is, the Scriptures. If 
a cloud glides before them, behind them is no- 
thing but the same clear sun. So, if there is a 
dark saying in the Scriptures, doubt not ; be- 
hind it, most surely, is shining the same truth 
which in other places is clear ; and let him who 
cannot pierce the dark, keep to what is clear. 

THE Word of God is a light which shines in 
darkness, brighter than the sun at mid-day. 
For in death not only is the light of this material 
sun extinguished, but even of reason with all her 
wisdom. But there, with all faithfulness, the 
Word of God still shines, an eternal sun, which 
faith only sees, and follows on into the clear 
Eternal Life. 


I HAVE often said that from the beginning I 
have prayed the Lord that He would send 
me neither dream, nor vision, nor angel. But I 
have entreated also, with earnest prayer, that He 
would give me the true and sure understanding 
of the Holy Scriptures. 

" A H, if I were only a good poet," he sighed, 
ir\. " I would fain write a costly Carmen, 
Song, or Poem, concerning the use, power, and 
fruitfulness of the Divine Word." 

HE said, " You have now the Bible in Ger- 
man. Now I will cease from my labors. 
You have what you want. Only see to it, and 
use it after my death. It has cost me labor 
enough. What an unspeakable gift it is that 
God speaks to us." 

IN the evening, bear something of sacred 
words with thee in thy heart to bed ; chew- 
ing the cud of which, like a clean ruminant ani- 
mal, thou mayst sweetly fall asleep. 

But let it not be much in quantity ; rather 
little, well pondered and understood ; so that 
rising in the morning thou mayst find ready for 
thee the relics of last night's feast. 

For in all study of the Sacred Scriptures we 
should despair of our own wit and labor, and seek 
understanding with fear and humility from God. 
At the close, and often during the reading, lift up 


the eyes of thy heart, and of thy body, to Christ, 
with a brief sigh imploring His grace, saying 
and thinking, " Grant, Lord, that I may rightly 
understand these things ; yet more, that I may 
do them. Behold, Lord Jesus, if this study be 
not to Thy glory, let me not understand a syllabic. 
But give to me whatever shall seem to Thee for 
Thy glory in me a sinner." 

SAINT JOHN the Evangelist speaks majes- 
tically, with very simple words ; as when he 
says, "/;/ tJie bcginniiigzvas the Word!' 

See with what simple words he describes God 
the Creator, and all the creatures ; as with a flash 
of lightning. 

If a philosopher and man of learning had un- 
dertaken to write of such things, how would he 
have gone round about with wondrous, swelling, 
high-sounding words, magnificent but obscure, 
de ente et essentia^ of self-existence, and divine 
and heavenly powers, so that one could have un- 
derstood nothing. Never were simpler words ; 
yet under such simplicity he says all. 

Every word in him is worth an hundred- 
weight ; as when he writes, " He came into a 
city of Samaria called Sychar, and spoke with a 
woman ; " and, " the Father honoreth the Son." 

They are indeed, in appearance, slumbering 
words ; but when one wakes them up, and unveils 
them, and earnestly meditates on them, they are 
found indeed worthy. 


UNDER the papacy they were constantly 
making pilgrimages to the shrines of the 
Saints ; to Rome, Jerusalem, St. lago de Com- 
postella, in order to make satisfa6lion for sins ; but 
now we may make true Christian pilgrimages, in 
faith, which will please God ; that is, if we dili- 
gently read the Prophets, Psalms, Evangelists. 
Thus shall we make journeys, not through the 
earthly cities of the saints, but in our thoughts 
and hearts to God Himself ; thus shall we make 
pilgrimages to the true Promised Land, and Para- 
dise of Eternal Life. 



Cot^e, i^i^ttiilitw, -forbearance, ©cntUneaa, 


T had been enough (in enumerating 
the fruits of the Spirit) to have said 
love, and no more ; for love expandeth 
itself into all the fruits of the Spirit, 
when he saith, " Love is patient, courteous," &c. 
Our love to our neighbors should be like a 
pure, chaste love between bride and bridegroom, 
by which all infirmities are veiled, covered, and 
made the best of, and only virtues looked at. 

The law of Christ is the law of love. And to 
love is not merely to wish well one to another, 
but to bear one another's burdens, that is, to bear 
those things which are giievous unto thee, and 
which thou wouldst not willingly bear. Therefore 


Christians must have strong shoulders and power- 
ful bones, that they may bear flesh, that is to say, 
the weakness of their brethren ; for Paul says 
that they have burdens and troubles. Love is 
mild, patient, courteous. 

How Luther bore the Burdens of others. 

HEN Do6lor Sebald and his wife both 
died of the plague, and Dr. Martin Lu- 
ther took their children home to his own house, 
many blamed him and said he was tempting God. 
" Ah ! " he said, " I had fine masters who would 
have taught me what it is to tempt God." 


THIS is the Voice of the Bridegroom and the 
Bride ; that is to say, sweet cogitations of 
Christ, wholesome exhortation, pleasant songs 
and psalms, praises and thanksgivings. 

God loveth not heaviness and doubtfulness of 
spirit ; He hateth discomforting do6lrine, heavy 
and sorrowful cogitations, and loveth cheerful 

Joy and Fear. 

DAVID says, " Serve the Lord with fear, and 
rejoice before Him with trenibliiigr 
Let some one make this rhyme for me : " to 
rejoice " and " to fear." 


My little son Hans can do this with me, but I 
cannot do it with God. For when I sit and write, 
or do anything, he sings a little song to me the 
while ; and if he makes it too loud, and I tell 
him so, then he still sings on, but makes it softer, 
crowing on with a sweet little subdued voice, 
slyly watching me all the time. So would God 
have it with us, that we should be always rejoic- 
ing, yet with fear and reverence before Him. 

Grace and Peace. 

THESE two words, grace and peace, do con- 
tain in them the whole sum of Christianity. 
Grace containeth the remission of sins ; peace, a 
quiet and joyful conscience. 

When the grace and peace of God are in the 
heart, then is man strong, so that he can neither 
be cast down by adversity, nor puffed up by pros- 
perity ; but walketh on evenly, and keepeth the 
highway, and is able to bear and overcome all 
troubles, yea, even death itself; for in spirit he 
walketh in the paradise of grace and peace. 



NO one ever made himself so low and little as 
Christ, so that He alone has the right to 
say, " Learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly in 
heart ; " words which no Saint can venture to ut- 
ter, nor ever more claim to himself the master- 

t68 words for the da y's march. 

ship in meekness and lowliness. All together 
they abide forever scholars under this Master. 

The whole Gospel is nothing more than the 
history of this lowliest " Son of God," and of His 

BY His washing of the disciples' feet, the 
Lord Christ would show us that the king- 
dom which He was establishing should not be 
an outward, worldly kingdom, wherein there is 
respe6l of persons, one greater and higher than 
another, as in Moses' kingdom ; but a kingdom 
wherein one should serve another by humility. 
" The greatest among you shall be as the young- 
est ; and he that is chief among you as he that 
doth serve. " 

No man, if he were the gentlest and kindest in 
the world, could have such a gentle bearing as 
Christ had ; for Christ is the Lamb of God, who 
beareth the sin of the world. 

The Ge7itleness of Christ. 

THERE is a legend of St. Peter, that he 
had always by him a cloth wherewith he 
wiped his eyes, which were often red with weep- 
ing. (And I can well believe it !) When he 
was asked why he wept, he said, " When he 
recalled that most sweet gentleness of Christ 
with His apostles, he could not restrain his tears." 
Christ must indeed have been perfe6l in kind- 


ness and tenderness. And even so and even such 
is he now daily with us, but we perceive it not. 

The Silence of Christ, 

CHRIST refrained from preaching and teach- 
ing until His thirtieth year, ever keeping 
silence, and suffering Himself not to be seen or 
heard in public. Throughout those years, what 
great and manifold impieties, idolatries, false re- 
ligions, blasphemies, heresies, and schisms must 
He have seen. Yet He could refrain Himself un- 
til He was called to the office of the Prophet. 
This is much to be wondered at. 

L^ither Nothing i7i Himself, 

MANY believe for my sake. But those only 
believe rightly who would remain stead- 
fast in their faith, if they heard (which God forbid) 
that I had denied and apostatized. These be- 
lieve not in Luther, but in Christ. The Word 
possesses them, and they possess the Word. Lu- 
ther they can let go, be he a saint or a villain. 
God can speak as well through Balaam as 
through Isaiah, through Caiaphas as through Pe- 
ter. Yea, He can speak by an ass. 

I myself know nothing of Luther ; will know 
nothing of him. I preach nothing of him ; only 
of Christ. The devil may take Luther (if he 
can). If he leave Christ in peace, it will be well 
with us too. 



So let US pray, before all things, that God may 
make His clear Child Jesus great in our hearts, 
from day to day, that with all eagerness and joy 
we may praise, bless, and confess Him before all. 

Our God is the God of the low and the lowly. 
Power becomes strong in weakness ; if we were 
not weak, we should be proud. It is only in weak- 
ness He can show His strength. 

Humility the Secret of Unity. 


I HEAR with grief that though living in one 
house, you are living without peace and unity, 
neither are you of one heart and mind in the 
Lord. This miserable and useless way of living 
comes either from the weakness of your humility 
— for where humility is, there is peace — or from 
your and my fault, in that we do not entreat 
before the Lord who made us, that He will dire61- 
our way in His sight, and lead us in His righteous- 
ness. He errs, errs, errs, who by his own coun- 
sel presumes to dire6l himself, much more others. 
With humble prayer and devoted affedlion must 
we seek this from God, 

There is peril in a life without peace, for it is 
without Christ, and is rather death than life. 

ALL the works of God are embraced in the 
Magnificat. If a thing exalts itself, it is 
nothing ; and again, when it is at the lowest and 


lowliest, it is once more exalted. If the weak in 
faith did not belong to Christ, what would have 
become of the Apostles, whom the Lord, even 
after His resurredlion, often had to rebuke for 
their unbelief 

Bearing one :2lnotl)ev'0 Buvliens. 
Forgive because forgiven, 


FOR the rest, about which thy soul is con- 
cerned, I desire to know whether, wearied 
out with her own righteousness, she is learning 
to breathe and trust in the righteousness of 
Christ. For in this our age, this temptation to 
presumption waxes hot in many, and chiefly in 
those who are struggling with their whole might 
to be just and good. 

Ignorant of the righteousness of God, which 
in Christ is freely and most generously bestowed 
upon us, they seek in themselves to do such good 
works that at last they may have confidence in 
standing before God, as if adorned with virtues 
and merits ; which is impossible to be done. 

When thou wert with us thou wert of this 
opinion, and in this error, and I also. But now 
I contend against this error ; not yet, however, 
have I overcome. 

Therefore, my good brother, learn Christ, and 
Him crucified ; learn to sing to Him, and despair- 


ing of thyself, to say to Him " Thou, Lord Jesus, 
art my righteousness, but I am Thy son. Thou 
hast taken on Thee what is mine, and Thou hast 
given to me what is Thine. Thou hast taken what 
Thou wast not, and given to me what I was not." 

Take heed lest thou aspire to such a purity 
as not to seem to thyself a sinner. For Christ 
dwells only in sinners. For this cause did He 
descend from heaven, where He dwells in the just, 
that He might also dwell in sinners. 

Ruminate on that love of His, and thou shalt 
be conscious of most sweet consolation in thy soul. 

For if by our labors and affli61ions it is pos- 
sible for us to reach quiet of conscience, for 
what did He die t Therefore, nowhere save in 
Him, by a confiding self-despair, wilt thou find 
peace ; whilst thou learnest of Him, that as He 
has taken thee on Himself, and made thy sins His, 
so also has He made His righteousness thine. 

If thou firmly believest this, as thou shouldst 
(and he who believes not is accursed), then do thou 
also take on thee thy undisciplined and erring 
brethren, and patiently bear with them, making 
their sins thine own. And if thou hast anything 
good, let it be theirs. So teaches the apostle : 
" Receive ye one ajiother, as Christ also received its, 
to the glory of God. " And again, " Let this inind 
be in yoiij zvJiich was also in CJirist Jesiis, who 
being in the form of God, emptied Himself !' So 
also thou, if thou seemest to thyself better than 
they, think it not robbery, or something meant 


for thyself alone, but "empty thyself," and forget 
what thou art, and be as one of them, that thou 
mayest sustain them. 

For miserable is that righteousness, which by 
comparison deeming others worse, will not bear 
with them, but meditates to fly and desert them, 
when by patience and prayer while present with 
them it might be profitable to them. This is to 
hide the Master's talent, and not give it, as due, 
to the usurers. 

Therefore, if thou art a lily and a rose of 
Christ, since thine abode must be among thorns, 
seek and strive with a single heart for the welfare 
of others, lest by impatience and rash judgment, 
or by hidden pride, thou thyself become a thorn. 

The kingdom of Christ is in the midst of His 
enemies, as saith the Psalm. Dost thou, then, 
image to thyself that thine shall be in the midst 
of friends t 

Thus, whatever thou lackest, prostrate before 
the Lord Jesus, ask for it. He Himself will teach 
thee all things. Consider only what He has done 
for thee, and for all, that thou also mayest learn 
what is due from thee to others. 

If He had willed to live only amongst the good, 
and to die for friends, for whom, I ask, would He 
have died, or with whom would He have lived } 

Thus do, my brother, and pray for me, and the 
Lord be with thee. 

Wittenberg, 1516. 

Thy Brother, Martin Luther, Augustinian. 


To the People of Wittenberg, 


CHRIST has borne our impotence in life and 
death. As Christ has done for us, we should 
do for our neighbor. He has borne our infir- 
mities ; so should we bear our neighbor's in- 

They have brought in these innovations in 
trivial things, and let faith and love go. 

We have many weak brothers and sisters who 
dwell around us. These also must we take with 
us to heaven. 

If Duke George and many others are angry 
and enraged with us, let us bear with them. It 
is possible that they may become better men 
than we are. 

In these free things, we must nowhere insist ; 
only, if our enemies insist on them as necessary 
things, we must resist. 

Mark this emblem. The sun has lisiht and heat. 
This light no kaiser nor king can quench. So also 
no one can quench the Word, But the heat we can 
flee, and go into the shade. Thus does Love, 
yielding to her neighbor, whenever needful. 

The Incarnation the Bo7id between Men. 

OD has become man ; nevermore, there- 
fore, should we be enemies to any man. 



We should be ready to lay down life for each 
other. Who would hate or injure the image in 
body and soul of Him who is thy God ? 

Those who wrong tcs still our Neighbors. 

EVERY man is my neighbor, who although 
he hath done me some wrong, or hurt me 
by any manner of way ; yet notwithstanding, he 
hath not put off the nature of man, or ceased to 
be flesh and blood, and the creature of God most 
like unto myself Briefly, he ceaseth not to be 
my neighbor. As long, then, as the nature of 
man remaineth, so long remaineth the command- 
ment of love, which requireth at my hand that I 
should not despise mine own flesh, nor render 
evil for evil ; but overcome evil with good, else 
shall love never be as Paul describeth it. 

GOD forgives sins of pure grace for Christ's 
sake ; but we must not abuse His grace 
and forgiveness. Our Lord God has given us 
many signs that sins shall be forgiven us, namely, 
the preaching of the Gospel, Baptism, the Sacra- 
ment, and the Holy Spirit in our heart. 

Now, it is also needful that we give a sign 
to show that we have received forgiveness of 
sins. This sign is, that each of us forgive his 
brother his trespasses. Although, indeed, be- 
tween God's forgiveness and ours there is no 
comparison. What are the hundred pence to 
the ten thousand talents .'' 


But to this brotherly forgiveness it is essential 
that the brother whom I am to forgive should 
confess his sins ; for sin which is not confessed, 
I cannot forgive. If my brother continues to 
wrong me, I must indeed suffer it, but I cannot 
forgive it, because he will not confess it. 

Care for the Fallen, 

TAKE care of this fallen brother of thine, 
yea, of ours. Nor do thou, averted from 
pity, abandon him who, subverted by impiety, 
abandoned thee. Let it not distress thee that 
ye suffer offence. To bear one another's bur- 
dens is that to which we are all called, baptized, 
ordained. For such has Christ been to us, such 
He is, such He will be forever ; as it is written, 
" Thoti art a Priest forever^ 

Hope for the Fallen. — 15 1 6. 

NO man hath so grievously fallen at any 
time, but he may rise again. And on the 
other hand, no man taketh so fast footing but 
he may fall. If Peter fell, I may likewise fall. 
If he rose again, I may also rise again. 

A Child helping a Veteran, 

GO to thy brother in hours of temptation. 
One alone is too weak to encounter the 
tempter. I am often glad of having even a child 
to speak to. This is so, in order that we may 


not glorify ourselves. Therefore at times I need 
and find help from one who has not as much 
theology in his whole person as I have in one 
finger, that I may learn what that meaneth, 
" My strength is made perfect in weaknessy 

OFTEN when I have lain under temptation, 
and have been in anguish, Philip Melanch- 
thon, or Dr. Pommer, or my own wife has com- 
forted me with the Word of God, so that I came 
thereby into peace, and felt " God says this," be- 
cause my brother said it 

I UNDERSTAND now that St. Paul was at 
times weak in faith, and when he went to 
Rome he was comforted when he saw that the 
brethren came to meet him. 

Yielding for Peace sake. 

IF two goats meet each other on a narrow 
path above a river, what will they do } 
They cannot turn back ; they cannot pass each 
other ; if they were to butt at each other, both 
would fall into the water and be drowned. What 
then will they do } Nature has taught them, one 
to lie down, and let the other pass over it. Thus 
both are unhurt. 

So should one man do to another ; let himself 
be trodden under foot rather than quarrel and 



Toleration of Differences. 

Y the Word alone I condemn. Let him who 
believes, believe and follow. Let him who 
believes not, not believe, and be dismissed. No 
man is to be constrained to faith and the things 
of faith, but to be drawn by the Word, that be- 
lieving willingly, he may come spontaneously 

Cease to contend by violence for the Gospel, 
By the Word the world is overcome. By the 
Word the Church is preserved, and by the Word 
she is restored. 

CHRISTIAN freedom is no trifle, although 
it may concern a trifle. 

KNOW, I know it must be that offences 
come ; neither is it a miracle for man to 
fall. The miracle is for man to rise asrain and 


stand upright. Peter fell that he might know 
himself to be a man. To-day also the cedars of 
Lebanon fall, whose tops touch the heavens. 
Nay (which surpasses all wonders), an angel 
fell in heaven, and Adam in Paradise. 

What wonder then if a reed is shaken with 
the wind, and the smoking flax is quenched ? 
The Lord Jesus teach thee, and work with thee, 
and finish the good work. 



How God gives. 

IF God refused us for a time the use of His 
creatures ; if He once withheld the sun from 
shining, at another time imprisoned the air, or 
again dried up the waters, or quenched the fire, 
then we would indeed eagerly give all our money, 
and everything we possessed, to have once more 
the use of these creatures. 

But because He lavishes His gifts and riches 
on us so freely and so abundantly, we claim them 
as a right. Thus the unspeakably great abun- 
dance of His countless benefits hinders and dark- 
ens our faith. 

Constancy of GocTs Gifts leading to In- 

GOD gives sun and moon and stars and 
elements, fire and water, air and earth, 
and all creatures, body and soul, and all kinds 
of nourishment, in fruits, grain, corn, wine, and 
all that is needful and useful to preserve his tem- 
poral life. 

And, besides. He gives us His good Word ; 
yes. Himself 

What return is rendered to Him t Nothing 
else, but that He is blasphemed, and set at 
naught ; yea, His dear Son grievously scorned, 
mocked, and hung on the cross ; and His ser- 


vants plagued, hunted down, and slain. This 
is our gratitude to Him for having created, re- 
deemed, nourished, and preserved us. 

IF God were to say to the Pope, the Emperor, 
kings, princes, bishops, do6lors, rich mer- 
chants, burghers, and farmers, " Thou shalt die 
this very day, unless thou give Me a hundred 
thousand florins," every one would say, " Yes, 
with all my heart, if I may only live." 

But now we are such thankless creatures, that 
we scarce sing Him a Deo gratias for the many 
and great benefits which we daily receive abun- 
dantly from His pure goodness and mercy. 

Nevertheless, the gracious Father is not es- 
tranged by this, but is ever doing us good. If 
He stinted his gifts, instead of lavishing and 
showering them on us, we should thank Him 
more. For instance : if we were all born with 
one leg or foot, and only in our seventh year 
received the second leg ; at fourteen one hand, 
at twenty a second, we might recognize more 
the worth of the gifts for a time withheld, and 
be more thankful. 

WE are so shamefully perverse that we are 
unthankful for our present gifts and 
goods, and only think of little deficiencies. Let 
every one go home and count the gifts which he 
has ; he will find far more gifts than deficiencies ; 
and let him thank God for them. 


To be used zvith Thanksgivirig, 

WHEN grapes, nuts, peaches, etc., were set 
on the table after the meal, and all were 
enjoying them, he said : " What does our Lord 
God on high, in heaven, say to our sitting here 
consuming His gifts ? Verily for this purpose 
He created them, that we should use them ; and 
He asks nothing from us but that we should 
acknowledge they are His gifts, and enjoy them 
with thanksgiving." 

Two Sacrifices. 

THE Scriptures point out two sacrifices 
which are well-pleasing to God. The 
first they call the sacrifice of praise, when we 
teach or hear God's Word with faith, and confess 
and spread it, and thank Him from our hearts 
for all the unspeakable gifts so richly given us 
in Christ. " He who offereth praise, he honoreth 

The other sacrifice is when an agonized, trou- 
bled heart takes refuge with God, seeks help 
from Him, and patiently waits for it. ** The sac- 
rifices of God are a troubled spirit. A broken 
and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not 

The Church a Choir of Praise. 

GOD has created all creatures, and nourishes 
and preserves them freely, out of pure 


goodness. But the little flock, dear Christen- 
dom, says Him a Deo Gratias for it. 

®n ©btng anir Communicating. 

VERY Christian has the priest's office, and 
does priestly work. 

LET us be liberal and bountiful towards all 
men, and that without weariness. For it 
is an easy thing for a man to do good once or 
twice, but to continue, and not to be discouraged 
through the ingratitude and perverseness of 
those to whom he hath done good, that is very 
hard. Therefore he doth not only exhort us to 
do good, but also not to be weary in doing good. 
And to persuade us he addeth : " For in due 
season we shall reap if we faint not." As if he 
said, "Wait and look for the eternal harvest that 
is to come, and then no ingratitude or perverse 
dealing of men shall be able to pluck you away 
from well-doing ; for in the harvest-time ye shall 
receive most plentiful increase and fruit of your 
seed." Thus, with most sweet words, he exhort- 
eth the faithful to the doing of good works. 

Date and Dabittcr. 

THERE was once a convent, which while it 
gave freely was rich, but when it became 
weary of giving it grew poor. Now, once upon 


a time one came to this convent and asked an 
alms, but they refused him. Then the beggar 
inquired why they would not give anything to 
him for God's sake ? The porter replied, " We 
are poor." Thereupon the beggar said, " The 
cause of your poverty is, that once you had two 
brothers in the convent, but one of these ye have 
cast out, and the other has secretly crept after 
him, and is gone too. For when Brother Date is 
set at naught, then Brother Dabitur also departs. 

Hoping for Nothing again. 

A PERSON was once excusing himself by 
saying " he would gladly help and serve 
people, and do them good, but their ingratitude 
repelled him." 

Then Dr. Martin Luther said, " Benefits and 
kindnesses should be conferred secretly, not 
with a view to fame ; quietly and without seeking 
our own enjoyment, for God's sake, and for our 
neighbor's good." 

THERE are three kinds of alms : first, that 
we give something towards the main- 
tenance of the office of the preacher. Secondly, 
to relieve our poor friends and kindred. Thirdly, 
to help strangers, and those who live near us, or 
any who need our aid, and cannot live without 
the help of others. 


HE noble Word brings naturally with it a 
burning hunger and an insatiable thirst, 


SO that we cannot be satisfied even if thousands 
beheve in it, but still long that no human crea- 
ture may lack it. 

Such a thirst suffers us not to rest, but impels 
us to speak (as David says, " I believed, there- 
fore have I spoken." And St. Paul, " We hav- 
ing received the same spirit of faith, therefore 
we also speak"), until we would press the whole 
world to our hearts, and incorporate every one 
with us, and make, if possible, one Bread and one 
Body of all. 

But not only does this thirst fall short of its 
longings ; men still it with gall and vinegar, as 
with Christ on the cross. 

Such a thirst had St. Paul when he wished 
^that " every one were even as he, except these 
bonds ;" when he wished to be "banished from 
Christ for his brethren's sake." 

Such a thirst for the salvation of your breth- 
ren have ye now received, sure token of a 
faith sound at the root. What remains then 
but that ye also must await the vinegar and the 
gall .-* that is, calumny, shame, persecution, as 
the reward of this your Christian speaking. 

How Lttt her gave, 


SINCE Johannes is going away, I will do 
all I can that he may leave me well 
cared for. For thou knowest how faithfully and 


diligently he has served, and truly demeaned 
himself humbly, according to the Gospel, and 
has done and suffered all things. 

Therefore think how often we have given gifts 
to good-for-nothing people, and to ungrateful 
students, on whom all was wasted ; so look 
around thee now, and see that such a good fel- 
low lacks nothing ; for thou knowest it will be 
well spent and pleasing to God. 

I know well there is but little to spare ; but 
I would gladly give him ten florins if I had 
them. Less than five florins thou must not give 
him, for he has no stock of clothes. What thou 
canst give more, give, I pray thee. The com- 
mon fund might present something for my sake 
to such a servant of mine, seeing that I have to 
keep my servants at my own cost, for the service 
and use of their church. But as they will. At 
all events be thou sure not to fail, as long as 
there is a silver tankard left. Think how thou 
canst provide it. God will surely give us more ; 
that I know. 

AGAIN, " To him who gives willingly it shall 
be given." Therefore, dear Kathe, when 
we have no more money, we must give the silver 

with Dr. Jonas, Master Veit Dietrich, and 
others of his guests, to walk in the little town 


of Tessen. There Doctor Martin Luther gave 
ahns to the poor. Then Dr. Jonas also gave 
something, and said, " Who knows when God will 
repay me ? " Thereupon Dr. Martin Luther said, 
laughing, "Just as if God had not first given 
it to you. Freely and simply should we give, 
from mere love, willingly." 

Luther s Theology in his Seal, 


SINCE you wish to know about the device 
for my seal, I will send you my first 
thoughts, which I would have my seal express, 
as a sign and token of my theology. 

First, there shall be a cross, black, in a heart 
which shall have its natural color, that thereby 
I may remind myself that faith in the Crucified 
saves us. For if a man believes from the heart 
he is justified. 

But although it is a black cross, because it 
mortifies, and must also cause pain, yet it leaves 
the heart its own color ; that is, destroying not 
its nature ; not killing, but preserving alive. For 
the just shall live by faith, but by the faith of 
the Crucified. 

Moreover, this heart shall be set in the midst 
of a white rose, to show that faith gives joy, con- 
solation, and peace, and sets the heart as in a 
white festive rose. Yet not as the world gives 
peace and joy ; therefore shall the rose be white. 


and not red. For white is the color of angels and 
of spirits. 

The rose is set in a sky-blue field ; because 
such joy in the spirit and in faith is a beginning 
of the heavenly future joy — is indeed enfolded 
therein, and embraced by hope, but not yet mani- 

And in this field shall be a golden ring, be- 
cause this blessedness endures eternally in hea- 
ven, and has no end, and is precious above all 
joy and all riches, as gold is the highest and 
most precious of metals. 

Christ, our dear Lord, be with your spirit until 
that life. Amen. 

iPait Efjirtr. 





GOD writes the Gospel, not in the Bible 
alone, but on trees, and flowers, and clouds, 
and stars. 

Creation the Veil of God. 

ALL creatures are merely shells, masks 
(Larven), behind which God hides Him- 
self, and deals with us. 

GOD dealeth not with us in this life face 
to face, but veiled in shadows from us. 
" Now, through a glass darkly ; but then, face to 

Therefore we cannot be without veils in this 
life. But in this wisdom is required, which can 


discern the veil from God Himself ; which wis- 
dom the world hath not. 

The covetous man heareth, indeed, that " man 
liveth not by bread alone, but by every word that 
proceedeth out of the mouth of God ;" he eateth 
the bread, but seeth not God in the bread, for he 
beholdeth only the veil, and outward show. So 
he doth with gold and other creatures, trusting 
to them as long as he has them ; but when they 
leave him he despaireth. 

GOD has set the type of marriage everywhere 
throughout the creation. Each creature 
seeks its perfe61ion in another. The very hea- 
vens and earth pi6ture it to us. 

THAT marriage is marriage ; the hand a 
hand ; wealth, wealth — that all can un- 
derstand ; but to believe that the marriage state 
is God's order ; the hand God's creature ; good 
clothing and riches His gift — it is God's work 
when men understand this. 

Miracles in Com7non Things, 
E foolish creatures cannot comprehend 
with our reason how it is that we speak 
with our mouths, and whence the word comes, 
so that the voice of one man sounds in so many 
thousand ears ; neither can we comprehend how 
our eyes see, nor how the bread and wine are 
changed into blood and muscle ; nor how, when 
we sleep, as to the body we are dead, and never- 


theless we live. And yet we seek to climb 
above ourselves, and to speculate about the high 
majesty of God, when we do not understand 
what is happening every day around us. 

REASON cannot understand nor grasp how 
it is that of a little kernel comes a tree ; 
how of a little grain of corn, which corrupts in 
the earth and perishes, twenty or thirty grains 
should spring to life. 

Therefore the world is full of God's miracles, 
which happen without ceasing. But because 
they are so countless and so manifold, and more- 
over so altogether common, as says St. Augus- 
tin, we do not regard them nor think of them. 

Christ once fed five thousand men, not count- 
ing the women and children, with five loaves, and 
when they had all had enough, there remained 
over and above twelve baskets full. If such a 
miracle happened now, all the world would won- 

But that God is daily, without ceasing, working 
great miracles, the fleshly heart sees and regards 
not ; far less will it wonder and give thanks. 

God the Lord gives daily water from the rocks ; 
bread from the sand ; wine, beer, butter, cheese, 
and vegetables of all kinds from the earth. But 
because He gives them lavishly, without ceasing, 
no one holds it to be a miracle. 

The blind world, forgetting Him, thinks all 
comes by chance. But on the other hand those 



who love Him, whithersoever they turn their 
eyes, whether they look on the heavens or the 
earth, the air or the water, see pure, obvious mir- 
acles of God, whereat they rapturously rejoice, 
and cannot enough wonder ; have gladness and 
delight therein, and praise the Creator, and know 
that He also has, delight in them. 

THE whole world is full of miracles, but our 
eyes must be pure, lest, because they are 
so common to us, they become dim. 

IN brief, in all, even in the smallest creatures, 
yea, even in their least members, we see the 
almighty power and the great wonder-working 
of God. For what man, however powerful, wise, 
and holy he be, can out of a fig make a fig-tree, 
or even one other fig .? or out of a cherry-stone a 
cherry-tree, or even understand how God does it } 

NO man can think out, or truly understand 
what God has done, and still ceaselessly 
is doing. Nor, if we sweat blood for it, could we 
write three lines such as St. John has written. 


HE growth of every seed is a work of crea- 

OD is constantly making visible things out 
of invisible, and would fain have us do the 


same. But we reverse His way, and must needs 
see and grasp a thing before we will believe it. 

The Creattircs God's Army. 

ALL the creatures are God's Host or Army. 
I have purposely kept the word Exercitiis, 
army, as it stands in the Hebrew, to defy 
the devil, who is forever striving with all his 
powers, and in all kinds of ways, to hinder all the 
creatures in accomplishing the work for which 
God created them. 


THE world, since Adam's Fall, knows neither 
God her Creator, nor His creatures ; lives 
a life poorer than that of the cattle, honors- not 
God, nor glorifies Him. Ah, if Adam had not 
sinned, how man would have recognized God in 
all the creatures, would have praised and loved 
Him, so that even in the smallest flower he would 
have seen and contemplated God's almightiness, 
wisdom, and goodness. 

For truly who can think to the bottom of this, 
how God creates out of the dry, dull earth so 
many flowers of such beautiful colors, and such 
sweet perfume, such as no painter nor apothecary 
can rival ? From the common ^rround God is 
ever bringing forth flowers, golden, crimson, blue, 
brown, and of all colors. All this Adam and 
his like would have turned to God's glory, using 


all the creatures with thanksgiving. But we 
misuse them senselessly, just as a cow or any- 
unreasonable brute tramples the choicest and 
fairest flowers and lilies beneath its feet. 

A Green Tree more gloriotis than Gold, 

IF Adam had not fallen, all the creatures had 
seemed such to us, that every tree and 
every blade of grass had been better and nobler 
than if it had been of gold. For in the true 
nature of things, if we will rightly consider, 
every green tree is far more glorious than if it 
were made of gold or silver. 

The Sun, 

had observed and taken notice that the 
sun for the two last days had risen as if with a 
bound of joy. " He rejoiceth as a hero to run a 
race." It is a beautiful work of God that we, 
fallen creatures, dare not gaze at nor fix our eyes 

In Paradise we could have gazed on the sun 
with open eyes, without pain or hindrance. 

A Rose. 

HE had a rose in his hand, and was admiring 
it as a fair and excellent work and crea- 
ture of God ; and he said, " If a man were able 


to make one rose, he would be worthy of an em- 

The Dew. 

I HAD not known what a lovely thing the dew 
is, unless the Holy Scriptures had commended 
it, when God says, " I will give thee of the dew of 
heaven." Ah, the Creation is a beautiful thing. 
When we ought to be understanding it, we lisp and 
stammer, and say " cledo " for "■ credo," like the 
babes. The word is strong, but the heart lisps. 
But our Lord God knows well that we are but 
poor little children, if we would only acknowl- 
edge it. 

We can never understand, save through the 
Son. This is the sum of His discourse, " Per Me, 
per Me, per Me!' 


SEE ! Christ makes the birds our masters and 
teachers, so that a feeble sparrow, to our 
great and perpetual shame, stands in the Gospel 
as a doctor and preacher to the wisest of men. 

TOWARDS evening, two little birds who 
were making a nest in the Do6lor's garden 
came flying thither, but were now and then fright- 
ened by those who were walking there. 

Then the Doctor said, " Ah, thou dear little 
bird, fly not from me. From my heart I wish thee 
well, if thou wouldst only believe it. Just in this 

iqS words for the halting-places. 

way it is that we distrust our Lord, who neverthe- 
less gives us nothing but good. Surely He will 
never harm us who has given His Son for us. 

" See the little birds, how choice and pure 
their way of life is. They lay the eggs so daintily 
in the nest, and brood over them. Then the nest- 
lings peep out. 

" If we had never seen an ^gg, and one were 
brought us from Calicut, in what a rapture of 
wonder we should be about it ! " 

NE evening when he saw a little bird 
perched on a tree, to roost there for the 
night, he said, " This little bird has had its supper, 
and now it is getting ready to go to sleep here, 
quite secure, and content, never troubling itself 
what its food will be, or where its lodging on the 
morrow. Like David, it * abides under the shadow 
of the Almighty.' It sits on its little twig con- 
tent, and lets God take care." 

DOCTOR LUTHER said, " How gladsome 
are the little birds ; sing so deliciously ; 
hop from one branch to another ! They have no 
anxious cares about any want or scarcity that 
may come ; are so content in themselves ; and 
sing with a glad heart their morning and their 
evening song. Well might we take off our hats 
to them and say, * My dear sir Do61or, I must con- 
fess I have not acquired this art of which thou art 
a master ! Thou sleepest all night in thy little 


nest, without any care ; in the morning thou risest 
again, art joyful and well off ; settest thyself on a 
tree and singest and praisest God ; seekest after- 
ward thy daily food and findest it. Why cannot 
I, old fool that I am, do the same, when I have so 
much reason to do it ?' Can the little bird leave its 
cares, and keep itself in such fulness of content, 
like a loving saint, having neither acre nor barn, 
neither larder nor cellar, yet singing and prais- 
ing, joyful and satisfied, because it knows that 
it has One who cares for it ? Why then cannot 
we do the same, laboring indeed the while, to 
till the field and gather the fruits, and garner 
them against our need ? " 

NO one can reckon how much it costs only 
to feed the birds, and even those which are 
of no use. I consider it costs more to maintain 
all the sparrows for one year than the king of 
France's revenues, with all his wealth, rents, and 
taxes. What shall we say, then, of the food of 
all the other birds, ravens, jackdaws, crows, 
finches, and the rest .'' 

SPARROWS are the smallest and the most 
dissolute of birds ; yet they have the 
greatest glory. All through the year they have 
the best days, and do the greatest mischief In 
the winter they infest the granaries ; in the 
spring they devour the seed in the field ; in 
harvest-time they have enough ; in autumn grapes 


and fruits are their refe6lion. Ergo digni sunt 
omni persecutione. 

The World our Storehouse, 

GOD'S power is great, who nourishes the 
whole world. It is a difficult article truly 
to grasp, "/ believe in God tJie Father!' He has 
created a plentiful provision for us. All seas 
are our cellars ; all forests our hunting-grounds ; 
the earth is full of silver and gold and countless 
fruits, all created for our sake. The earth is our 
granary and our store-chamber. 
It is God who feeds us, not money. 

GOD knows all handicrafts, and exercises 
them in the most skilful way. For the 
stag, He makes a coat to cover him, which would 
not of itself wear out for nine hundred years. 
For the stag's feet He makes shoes which last 
lonsrer than the owner. And the sun is His 
hearth-fire, at which the food of all the creatures 
is cooked. 

I WONDER how our Lord God finds wood 
for so many uses throughout the whole 
wide world ; as wood for building, for burning, 
for carpenters, for coopers and wheelwrights, 
for beams of chambers, window-sashes, oars, 
candlesticks, cups, buckets, etc. 


In brief, wood is the most useful and needful 
thing in the world, which we could not do with- 

Cattle preaching to us., 

ONE day when Do6lor Luther saw the cattle 
in the field going to pasture, he said, 
" There go our preachers ; the carriers of our 
milk, butter, cheese, wool, who daily preach to 
us faith in God, that we should trust Him as our 
Father, that He will care for us and feed us. 

Divers kinds of Beasts. 

WILD beasts are beasts of the Law, for they 
live in fear and trembling. But tame 
animals are creatures of grace ; they live se- 
curely with man. 

Beauty of some Creatures — their Use, 

IT does not follow that God has created all 
plants merely that they may furnish food for 
man and beast. Many things were created that 
we may praise God for them. The stars, of what 
use are they, save that they praise God their 
Creator t 


The Stars. 

HE science of the stars and of the revolu- 
tions of the heavens is the oldest science 


of all, which brought many others with it. The 
ancients, especially the Hebrews, gave earnest 
heed to the movements of the heavens, as God 
says to Abraham : " Consider the stars ; canst 
thou count them ? " Astronomy is a beautiful 
gift of God, as long as she keeps to her own 
sphere ; but if she steps beyond it, and seeks to 
prophesy future things, as the Astrologers do, 
this is not to be encouraged. I have gone so 
far in Astrology that I believe it to be nothing. 

The Music of the Spheres. 

PYTHAGORAS says that the movements 
of the stars make a beautiful concert and 
harmony, according with each other ; but that 
men through constant use are now weary of this. 
It is indeed so with us. We have so many 
beautiful creatures around us that we heed them 
not, for their abundance. 

All Creatures working freely according to 
God's Law. 

WHATEVER a thing is created for, it does 
without law and unconstrained. A tree 
brings forth fruit freely by nature, unconstrained. 
The sun shines by nature, whereto God has 
created it, unbidden and uncompelled. And all 
creatures do of free will what they ought to do. 
So also God Himself is ever doing good by His 
nature and chara6ler, freely. 


Thanksgiving for a T/mnder storm. 

'"nr^HAT is a beautiful storm," he said once, 
X with thanksgiving, when thunder came 
with a fruitful rain, awakening and moistening 
earth and trees, " Thus Thou givest, unthankful 
and covetous as we are ! That is a fruitful 
thunder ; it has touched the earth and opened 
its treasure-house, so that gives forth a fragrant 
perfume, just as the prayer of good Christians 
gives forth fragrance to God." 


ONCE in beautiful weather in May, he said, 
" What a picture of the Resurre6lion ! 
See how the trees are dressed for their bridal ! 
How delightfully all is growing green ! What a 
precious May ! Ah, that we would only trust 
God ! What will it be in the life beyond, if God 
can show us such great delights in this pil- 
grimage, and this troubled life! 

Man, not Nature, the Dwelling-place of God. 

HEAVEN and earth, with all castles of kings 
and emperors, could not make a dwelling- 
place for God, but in the man who keeps His 
Word, there He will dwell. 

Isaiah calls the heavens His throne, and the 
earth His footstool, but not His abode. We may 
search long to find where God is, but we shall 


find Him in those who hear the Words of 

For the Lord Christ saith, " If any man love 
Me, he will keep My words, and we will make 
our abode with him." 




F Adam had remained in his inno- 
cence, and had not transgressed 
God's law, he would not always have 
remained in the same state in Para- 

What a fair, glorious creature man had been, 
adorned with all wisdom and knowledge ! He 
would have had joy and pleasure from all crea- 
tures, and what fair, joyous changes and trans- 
formations there would have been in all things. 

He would have been received into eternal joy 
and into heaven, not through death, but through 
transformation and translation into another life. 


VE, the dear, holy mother, had good hope 
of Cain ; was persuaded (it seems) that 


he was the seed of the woman which was to 
bruise the head of the serpent. 

But the dear mother was mistaken ; she had 
not yet fathomed her misery — knew not that 
" what is born of flesh is flesh ; " she erred as 
to the time when this Blessed Seed, conceived 
of the Holy Ghost, should be born to the world 
of the Virgin Mary. 


WHEN Eve, his only companion and dear 
wife, bore Cain to Adam, there must 
have been great rejoicing ; so when Abel was 

But a great and bitter grief and heart-sorrow 
must the murder of Abel have been ; bitterer to 
Adam than his own fall, since thereby once more 
he and his Eve became hermits on the earth. 

Ah ! Adam must have been a sorrowful man ; 
our sufferings are child's play to his suffering 
and heart-sorrow. 

If, through God's grace, he had not been of so 
good and strong a nature, he with his Eve must 
soon have died of sorrow. But the promise of 
the Seed of the woman comforted them. 

The Early Patriarchs, 

IT were worth a world to have the legends of 
the Patriarchs who lived before the flood ; 
to know how they lived and preached, and what 
they preached. 


Our Lord God must, have thought, " I will bury 
these lesfends beneath the flood, for those who 
come after will heed them little, and understand 
them less. I will keep them until they meet 
each other in the other life." 

So the dear Fathers who came after the flood, 
Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, also the Prophets and 
Apostles, whom the devil did not leave unas- 
sailed in this life, will have comforted themselves 
with thinking of the long delay of the earlier 
Patriarchs, and will have said, " I have a short 
time to reckon on compared with those before 
the flood ; few years wherein to spread God's 
Word, and to suffer my cross and pain. What 
is my time compared with the unspeakable toil 
and labor, anguish, suffering, and vexation of our 
dear fathers of old, who suffered and endured 
seven or eight hundred years, both from the devil 
and the world 1 " 

Esau and Is/imael. 

HE said, "The reje6lion and casting away 
was only temporal. For Esau's hatred 
to Jacob his brother lasted only for a time, not 
always. And I believe that Ishmael and Esau 
were saved ; for many among those nations 
received the Word of God." 


OB had much temptation even from his own 
friends, who pressed hard on him ; therefore 


it stands in the text that his friends were angry 
with him. He made answer to them, " I know 
that I am no adulterer, murderer, nor thief." 
When he said that, they were angry with him, 
and vexed him sore. He, however, suffered them 
to chatter on, and was silent. 

Job is an example of God's goodness and 
mercy ; for holy he indeed is, but in temptation 
he fell much, yet he was not forsaken, for he is 
rescued and delivered again by God's mercy. 

Moses and Aaro7i. 

WHEN God has something great to accom- 
plish. He begins the work through one 
man, and afterwards gives other helps, as with 
Moses and Aaron. 

jfephthali s Vow. 

JEPHTHAH, although the Spirit had come 
upon him, made a foolish and superstitious 
vow, after he gained the vi6lory, that he would 
sacrifice his own daughter. If there had been a 
godly and reasonable man present, he could have 
made him sensible of the folly of this vow, and 
have said, " Jephthah ! thou shalt not slay thy 
daughter on account of thy foolish vow. For 
the law concerning vows must be interpreted 
according to justice and fitness, not according to 
the letter." 



THERE never was a man who suffered more 
than David. His life is a true tragedy. 
There is nothing Hke it among the Greeks. 

We are all poor schoolboys compared with 
him ; we have indeed the same spirit, but no- 
where are such gifts as his were. 

He was a great rhetorician. He could weave 
one subje6l into a vast web, with words, as in 
the Hundred and Nineteenth Psalm. He could 
be brief, and embrace all religion and do6lrine in 
one Psalm, as in the Hundred and Tenth. 


IT is a terrible history, that of Elijah, that 
such a holy man prayed that it should not 
rain for such a long time. He must have been 
very indignant, because he saw the teachers of 
the people slain, and good godly men hunted 
down and persecuted. 

Tlie Prophets. 

HE was asked about the mode of revelation 
to the Prophets, who always say, " Thus 
saith the Lord," whether God had spoken per- 
sonally to them or not. 

He said, " They were very holy, spiritual, 
diligent men, who meditated earnestly on holy 
things. Therefore God spoke to them in their 


hearts and consciences, and the prophets re- 
ceived it as a sure revelation. 


"TDILATE is a better man than any of the 
Jl princes of the Empire who are not Evan- 
geHcal," said Dr. Martin Luther. " He kept 
firmly to the Roman rights and laws, affirming 
that he could not suffer an innocent man to be 
ruined and put to death, his cause unheard, con- 
vi6led of no one evil deed. Therefore he tried 
all honorable methods to set Christ free. But 
when they spoke to him of the displeasure of 
Caesar, he was carried away, and let the Roman 
laws and rights go. For he thought, * It is only 
one man, poor and despised ; no one will take 
his cause up ; what harm can his death do me } 
It is better that one should die, than that the 
whole nation should be set against me.'" 

Then Master Johann Mathesius said to Dr. 
Martin Luther, he had known two preachers who 
had hotly debated these two questions : why 
Pilate scourged Christ ? and why he said, " What 
is truth .? " For one said Pilate had done it from 
compassion ; the other, from tyranny and scorn. 
Dr. Martin Luther answered: "Pilate was a 
kindly man of the world, and he scourged Christ 
from compassion, that he might thereby quiet 
the insatiable rage and fury of the Jews. And 
by his saying to Christ, * What is truth } ' he 
gave to understand as much as this : ' Why wilt 


thou dispute about truth, in this wretched life 
here in the world ? It is worth nothing ; but 
thou wilt be thinking about wretched disputes, 
and questions of the jurists, or thou mightest 
be set free.'" 

WHEN Pilate asked Him, "Art Thou the 
king of the Jews ? "— " Yes," He said, " I 
am, but not such a king as Coesar ; else would 
my servants and soldiers fight for me, to set me 
free ; but I am a king sent to preach the Glad 
Tidings, that I might bear witness to the Truth." 
" What ! " said Pilate, " If thou art a king of that 
kind, and hast such a kingdom as this, consisting 
in the word and the truth, thou wilt do no harm 
to my kingdom." And Pilate doubtless thought, 
"Jesus is a good, simple, harmless man, who is 
talking about a kingdom which no one knows 
anything about. Probably he comes out of some 
forest or remote region, is a simple creature who 
knows nothing of the world, or its government." 

yudas Iscariot, 

JUDAS," said Dr. Martin, " is as necessary 
among the Apostles as three of the other 
Apostles. He solves countless questions and 
arguments. For instance, when they cast at us 
that there are many false brethren, and bad, un- 
christian men amongst us." True ! Judas also 
was an Apostle ; and no doubt he condu6led 
himself as a more prudent man of the world 


than the rest. No one dete6led anything amiss 
in him. 

Grace does. 

DOCTOR MARTIN said one evening when 
he was at Lochau : " Oh ! how I should 
Hke to have been once with the Lord Christ when 
He was rejoicing ! " 

The Trmmphal Entry, 

THE entry of the Lord Christ into Jerusalem 
must have been indeed a poor, mean, and 
beggarly entry, for Christ the great and mighty 
King sits on a poor borrowed ass. For John 
clearly shows that such asses were meant for 
poor people, who might use them in their need 
without paying any hire. The garments which 
the disciples laid thereon were His saddle. Yet 
it was a wonderful entry, according to the pro- 
phecy of Zachariah. 

For when He came from Bethany to Bethphage 
on the Mount of Olives, which must have been 
as near Jerusalem as the bridge over the Elbe is 
to this town (Wittenberg), after he had awaken- 
ed Lazarus from the dead, and a great multitude 
of people went before and followed, shouting and 
exulting. He sent His disciples to fetch the ass, 
and would ride on it, that the prophecy might be 

I hold, however, that Christ Himself did not 
bring forward the prophecy, but the Apostles and 


Evangelists. Christ, meantime, preached and 
wept ; but the people did Him honor, with olive 
and palm branches, which are signs of peace and 

The Personal Appearance of St. Paul. 

ONCE Magister Veit Dietrich asked him, 
" What kind of a person, Herr Do6lor, do 
you think St. Paul was } " The Do6lor said, " I 
think Paul must have been an insignificant-look- 
ing person, with no presence ; a poor, dry little 
man, like Master Philip." 


Books of tl]c I5^^ls Scriptures. 

HE first chapter of Genesis comprehends 
the whole Scriptures. 

IN Deuteronomy God has placed the most 
beautiful rules and laws for the govern- 
ment of the world. 

IN the Book of Judges the excellent heroes 
and deliverers sent by God are depidled, 
who began and carried on all their works in trust 
in God, according to the First Commandment. 


HE Books of the Kings go a hundred thou- 
sand steps before him who wrote the 
Chronicles, for he only points out the substance 
and the most remarkable passages and histories, 


and passes by what is simple and small. There- 
fore more honor is to be given to the Book of 
the Kings than to the Chronicles. 

ECCLESIASTES is a very good and plea- 
sant Book, although it is a fragment ; it 
wants boots and spurs, and rides in sandals, as I 
used when in the cloister. It has many a fine 
rule for domestic government. It is like a 
Talmud, compiled from many books, perhaps 
from the library of Ptolemy Euergetes in Egypt. 

SO also the Proverbs of Solomon were col- 
le6led by others from the mouth of the 
king, perhaps as he sate at table or elsewhere, 
and brought together. 

The Psalms, 

AS this sweet book of David continued to be 
sung in all our churches, and to be chant- 
ed over so many thousand times in these inces- 
sant rounds and forms of prayer, — even by this 
frigid use of the Psalms some small savor of life 
was diffused abroad among many that were of an 
honest and good heart ; and from these words them- 
selves only, those that feared God drank in some 
little sweetness of the breath of life, and some 
small taste of consolation, like the faint fragrance 
that is to be found in the air that is not far from 
a bed of roses. Their experience was like also 
unto a simple man passing through a flowery and 


sweet-smelling meadow, who, though he knew 
not the peculiar nature and properties of the 
herbs and flowers, yet found his senses regaled 
with the general fragrance. 

IF all the greatest excellences and most choice 
experiences of all the true Saints should be 
gathered from the whole Church since it has ex- 
isted, and should be condensed into the focus of 
one book — if God, I say, should permit any most 
spiritual and gifted man to form and concentrate 
such a book — such a book would be what the 
Book of Psalms is, or like unto it. For in the 
Book of Psalms we have not the life of one of the 
Saints only, but we have the experience of Christ 
Himself, the head of all the Saints. 

So that you may truly call the Book of Psalms 
a little Bible. Be assured that the Holy Spirit 
Himself has written and handed down to us this 
Book of Psalms as a Liturgy, in the same way as 
a father would give a book to his children. He 
Himself has drawn up this manual for His disci- 
ples ; having colle6led, as it were, the lives, groans, 
and experiences of many thousands, whose hearts 
He alone sees and knows. 

ALL other histories and lives of the Saints, 
which describe their a61s and works only, 
when compared to the Book of Psalms, set forth 
to us nothing more than dumb saints ; and 
everything that is recorded of them is dull and 


lifeless. But in the Psalms, where the very ex- 
pressions of those that prayed in faith are record- 
ed, all things live, all things breathe, and living 
chara61;ers are set before us in the most lively 

THE Psalms record not the common and every- 
day expressions of the saints, but those 
ardent and pathetic utterances by which, in real 
earnest, and under the very pressure of tempta- 
tions, and in the very wrestlings of their souls, 
they poured out their hearts like Jacob, not before 
man, but before God ! The Psalms give us 
therefore not only the works and words of the 
Saints, but the very hidden treasure of their 
hearts' feelings, the very inmost sensations and 
motives of their souls. They give thee not only 
the outward David, but the inner David ; and 
that more descriptively than he could do it him- 
self, if he were to talk with you face to face. 

There you may look into the hearts of the 
Saints, as into Paradise, or into the opened heav- 
en ; and may see, in the greatest variety, all the 
beautiful and flourishing flowers, or the most 
brilliant stars, as it were, of their upspringing 
afle6lions towards God for His benefits and 


HE Psalms have this peculiarity of excel- 
lence above all other books of description, 
that the Saints whose feelings and sensations are 


therein set forth did not speak to the wind, un- 
der those their exercises and confli6ls, nor to an 
earthly friend, but unto and before God Himself, 
and in the sight of God. And it is this that 
above all things gives a seriousness and reality 
to the feelings ; it is this that affedls the very 
bones and marrow, when a creature feels itself 
speaking in the very sight and presence of its God. 

THE Book of Psalms, therefore, as it contains 
these real feelings of the Saints, is a book 
so universally adapted and useful to all Chris- 
tians, that whatever one that truly fears God 
may be suffering, or under what temptation 
soever he may be, he may find in the Psalms 
feelings and expressions exactly suited to his 
case, just as much so as if the Psalms had been 
indited and composed from his own personal 

IN a word, if you desire to see the Christian 
Church painted forth in a most beautiful 
pi6lure and in the most lively and descriptive 
colors, then take the Psalms into thy hands ; 
this will be as a clear universal mirror, which 
will represent to thee the whole Church in its 
true features ; and if there be one that fears God, 
it will present to thee a pi6lure of thyself; so 
that, according to the maxim of the philoso- 
pher of old, yM'^&i tfeauTov, thou wilt by this book 



come to a true knowledge of thyself, and also 
of God and all creatures. 

The Book of Job, 

THE Book of Job is a very good book, writ- 
ten not for his sake only, but for the con- 
solation of all troubled, assaulted, grieved, suf- 
fering hearts. 

It vexed and pained him that things went so 
well with the ungodly. Therefore this must be 
a comfort to poor Christians who suffer and are 
persecuted, namely, that in the life beyond, God 
will give them such a great, glorious, and eternal 
inheritance, and here also will set a bound to 
their sufferings. 

Job did not speak just as it stands written in 
his book, but he thought it ; for it is not thus 
that people speak in confli6l and temptation ; 
but the fa6l and marrow of the thing was this. 

It is just like an argnnientunt Tabulce, as in 
a drama, in which various Persons are brought 
on, one speaking to or after another, as it is in 
his heart ; thus the Master has described it ; as 
Terence his comedies. 

He intended to give an example of patience. 

It is possible that Solomon wrote this, for it 
is almost his way of speaking, as in others of 
his books. 

I hold it to have been a true history. This 
history of Job must have been ancient and well 
known in the days of Solomon, if indeed he 


undertook to narrate it, as if I undertook to 
write the history of Joseph, or of Rebecca. 

The Hebrew poet and master who wrote this 
book, be he who he may, had himself seen and 
experienced such conflidts and temptations as 
he describes. 

DANIEL and Isaiah are the two most ex- 
cellent Prophets. 

THE preaching of the Prophets is not given 
whole and entire, but their disciples and 
hearers took down from time to time one saying 
and another, and so put them together. Thus 
was the Bible preserved. 



HE ancient Fathers and Do6lors, as 
Augustine, Hilary, Ambrose, Bona- 
ventiira, and others, should not be 
cast aside, but held in esteem and 
honor. For we see in them that the Church in 
their days believed in Jesus Christ, and believed 
as we do now. 

St. Ausfustine was an excellent teacher. He 
taught faithfully of the grace of God. 

Hilary and Augustine have written many beau- 
tiful things about the Holy Trinity, and about 

To Bernard Jesus is as dear as to any one in 
the world. 


Of " St. John Huss the Martyr^ 

N John Huss the Holy Ghost was very 
powerful, in that he was able to stand so 


joyfully and steadfastly for the Word of God, he 
alone against such great peoples and nations ; 
Italy, Germany, Spain, France, England, assem- 
bled at the Council of Constance. 

Against all this clamor he stood, and bore it, 
and was burned. 

Rome would not suffer him to whisper in a 
corner, and is now constrained to suffer him to 
cry aloud through all the world, until Rome itself 
and the whole world are become too narrow for 
that cry, and nevertheless there is no end to it. 

Lege7ids of the Saints, 

DR. MARTIN said once he wished much that 
the legends of the Saints could be wisely 
sele6ted from. There was much to learn from 
some of them. 

THE legend of St, Margaret is an ecclesiastical 
allegory and type of the Church. For the 
Church is the costly Margarita, the precious 
Pearl ; Olybrius the tyrant is the world, which 
resists the Church, throws this precious Pearl 
Margaret into the dungeon, where she is tor- 
mented and vexed with many assaults from the 
devil, which she cannot escape until she grasps 
the Cross — that is, Christ. Thus the dragon is 
driven away and slain. 


OCTOR MARTIN preached about St. 
Christopher on his festival, and said that 



" his legend was not a history, but that the Greeks, 
as a wise and learned and gifted people, had ima- 
gined it to signify what a Christian should be, 
and how it would go with him. It is a beauti- 
ful Christian poem." 

So, also (he said), is it with the legend of St. 
George and the Dragon. 



REAT men and heroes are especial 
gifts of God, men whom He gives and 
upholds, who carry on their work and 
calUng, and do great deeds ; not puffed 
up with empty imaginings or droning on with 
cold, sleepy thoughts ; but especially stirred and 
driven by God thereto, they fulfil their course and 
work ; as King Alexander gained for himself the 
Persian Empire, and afterwards Julius Caesar the 
Roman Empire. 

Thus also have the Prophets, St. Paul, and 
other great and noble men, done and fulfilled 
their work by the especial grace of God, as the 
Book of Judges shows, wherein we see how God 
gave great things with one man, and with him 
withdrew them. 


Sijnplicity of Tr^ce Heroes. 

RANK, open-hearted soldiers have few 
words— are modest, do not boast, do not talk 


much ; for they have seen men. When they 
speak, the deed goes with the word, as with my 
Lord Bernard von Mila. In his manners he 
was like a maiden, right noble man that he was ; 
he had much of the lion in his heart, but in 
words was gentle and unpretending. 

Grace using^ not destroying Natiire. 

GRACE does not altogether change nature, 
but uses it as it finds it. For instance, when 
a man who is kind and gentle by nature is turned 
to the faith, like Nicolas Hausmann, grace 
makes him a tender, gentle preacher ; whilst of a 
man who is naturally given to anger, like Con- 
rad Cordatus, it makes an earnest, serious 
preacher ; whilst if another has a subtle and 
powerful understanding and wit, that ' also is 
used for the benefit of the people. 


Princes whom Luther honored, 


HE Ele6lor Frederic was a wise, under- 
standing, able, and excellent prince, a great 
enemy to all pomp and pretence and hypocrisy. 
A pious. God-fearing, prudent prince, such as 
Duke Frederic, Ele6lor of Saxony, was, is a great 
gift of God. He was a true father of the father- 
land. With his officials, castellans, stewards, and 
servants he kept accurate accounts. 

HEROES. 225 


THE wonderful steadfastness of the Ele6lor 
John at the Diet of Augsburg was greatly 
to be praised. He said : " There are two ways : 
to deny God, or to deny the world. Let each 
man consider which is the best." It is a great 
miracle and grace of God that one Ele6lor should 
have stood so firm against the rest, and also 
against the Emperor. 

THE physicians say Duke John died of 
cramp. As infants are born without care, 
live without care, die without care ; so will it 
seem to our dear prince Duke John at the Last 
Day, as if he had come in from the forest after 
the chase ; he will not know what has happened to 
him. As Isaiah says, " The just is taken away ; 
he shall enter into peace ; they shall rest on 
their beds." 


Landgrave much, that he was a good, un- 
derstanding, and merry-hearted prince, who kept 
good peace in his land, which was full of forests 
and rocks, so that the people could dwell securely 
therein, work and trade. For if any one was 
robbed and plundered, instantly he pursued the 

thieves and punished them, just as his father 



had done, who once restored three thousand 
florins to one who had been robbed of them ; and 
when he discovered who had done it, razed his 
castle to the ground, the dehnquent himself 
having fled. For he said it was for this they 
ruled, that the land might be kept pure. 

The Landgrave is for his age an excellent 
prince, who suflers himself to be spoken to and 
counselled ; soon yields to good counsel ; and 
when he has decided, delays not long, but 
executes with diligence ; therefore for these 
princely virtues he is feared by his adversaries. 
He has a Hessian head — cannot be idle ; must 
have something to do ; trusts and believes not 


ONCE when the king of Denmark had sent 
a solemn embassy to Kaiser Maximilian, 
and the Ambassador claimed such honor for his 
sovereign as to demand to give his message to the 
Emperor sitting, the Emperor, observing it, 
stood up to hear him, so that, for shame, the 
Ambassador had to stand also. 

On the other hand, once, when another Am- 
bassador, at the commencement of his address, 
lost his presence of mind and stopped short, the 
Emperor began to speak easily to him of other 
things, to give him time until he recovered. 

Again, once, when an impudent beggar asked 
alms of the Kaiser, and called him " Brother, be- 

HEROES. 227 

cause they were both children of one fallen 
Adam," Kaiser Maximilian said to him, " See ! 
there are two kreuzers. Go to the rest of thy 
brothers ; if they give thee as much, thou wilt be 
a richer man than I." 

Tene inensuram et respice finent was Kaiser 
Maximilian's motto. A finer didlum than Kaiser 
Karl's Plus ultra. 

The Love of their SubjeHs the true Treasure 
of Princes. 

Do6lor Martin Luther at table that "he 
had heard in his youth how, at a Diet, several 
princes had boasted of the excellences of their 
respe6tive territories. 

" The Duke of Saxony said he had silver under 
his mountains, and mines which yielded great 

" The Count Palatine praised his good Rhenish 

" But Duke Eberhard of Wiirtemberg said, ' I 
am a poor prince, and cannot compare myself with 
either of your graces (Liebden) ; nevertheless, I 
have this treasure in my land, that w^ere I riding 
anywhere therein, alone and unattended, I could 
find a night's lodging, safe and welcome, in the 
home of any of my subje6ls.' 

" And all the princes held this to be the best 
treasure of all." 


KAISER MAXIMILIAN said, '^ There were 
three kings in the world. He himself, the 
Emperor ; the king of France, and the king of 
England. He was a king of kings ; for when he 
required anything of his princes which pleased 
them they did it, and if not, they let it alone. 
The king of France was a king of asses, for all 
that he commanded of his people they had to do, 
like beasts of burden. But the king of England 
was a king of men ; for what he required of 
them they did willingly, and held their prince 
dear, like obedient subje6ls. 



N the last day of September Dr. Mar- 
tin saw his little children sitting at 
the table, and he said : 

" Christ says, * Verily I say tinto you, 
except ye be converted and become as little children^ 
ye shall not e?iter the kittgdom of heaven.^ He af- 
firms it with an oath (verily). O my God, surely 
Thou makest it all too simple ; to lift children, 
such little foolish creatures, so high ! How comes 
it that Thou hast bidden and taught thus, that a lit- 
tle simple child should be preferred before a sage ? 
How can this consist with our Lord God's judg- 
ment and righteousness, which Paul exalts so 
high } Righteousness of God ! Righteousness 
of God ! Is this thy righteousness, that Thou 
castest out the prudent and receivest babes .-* 
The answer is, ' Believe God's Word and surren- 
der thyself Our Lord God has purer thoughts 
than we men. He must prune and polish us, and 


cut away great branches and boughs, ere He can 
make us such children and babes again. 

** See what pure thoughts Httle children have ; 
how they look at heaven and death without any 
doubting. They are as if in Paradise." 

HIS little son once sat at the table and lisped 
and prattled about the life in heaven, and 
said what great joy there must be in heaven with 
eating, dancing, etc. There must be the great- 
est of all pleasures ; the brooks flowing with 
pure milk, and cakes growing on the trees. Then 
Dr. Martin said, " The life of little children is 
the most blessed and the best of all, for they have 
no temporal cares, know nothing of the frightful, 
monstrous fanaticism in the Church, suffer no 
terror of death, nor of hell, have only joure 
thoughts and joyful speculations." 

HE was once playing and having little games 
with his little daughter Lenichen, and he 
asked her, " Lenichen, what will the Holy Christ 
bring you this Christmas 1 " and then he added, 
" Little children have such choice thoughts of 
God, how He is in heaven, and is their own dear 

DOCTOR MARTIN, in the year 1538, on 
the 1 7th of August, heard that his children 
had been quarrelling with each other, and soon 
afterward had been reconciled. Then he said, 


" My Lord God, how well this life and these plays 
of the little ones must please Thee ! Indeed, all 
their sins are nothing but forgiveness of sins." 

DOCTOR MARTIN was noticing one day 
how his little child of three years old 
was playing and prattling to himself, and he 
said, " This child is like one intoxicated ; knows 
not that it lives ; lives joyfully, without fear ; 
springs and dances for joy." 

ONCE when his infant son was brought to 
Dr. Martin, and he kissed and embraced 
it, he said, " My God, how dearly Adam must 
have loved Cain, the first-born human creature. 
And afterward he became a fratricide ! O 
Adam, woe, woe to thee ! " 

DOCTOR MARTIN once would not suffer 
his son to appear before him for three 
days, nor would he take him again into favor 
until he had written, and humbled himself for his 
fault, and entreated forgiveness. 

And when his mother, Dr. Jonas, and Dr. Teut- 
leben pleaded for the boy, he said, " I would 
rather have a dead than an unworthy son. St. 
Paul said a bishop should be one that brought 
up his own children well, that others might take 
example thereby." 


PARENTS are to be honored above all 
magistrates, for they are the fountain and 
source of the Fourth Commandment. 

I'^HE life and the faith of children is the best, 
for they have only the Word ; and to it they 
hold fast, and simply give God the honor of be- 
lieving that He is truthful, holding what He 
promises for certain. 

ANOTHER time he took his infant son and 
said to him, "Thou art our Lord God's 
little babe (Narrchen), livest under His grace 
and the forgiveness of sins, not under the Law. 
Thou fearest not, feelest safe, and troublest thy- 
self about nothing. With thee all is unspoiled 
and uncorrupted." 

HIS little son Martin had a little dog with 
which he was playing. Once when his 
■^ather saw it, he said, *' This babe preaches the 
Word of God in word and deed, for God says, 
' Have dominion over the cattle.' And the dog 
will suffer anything from the child." 

WHEN it was told him that his little 
daughter of four years old often spoke 
with joyful confidence of Christ, of the dear angels, 
and of eternal joy in heaven, he once said to 
her, " Ah ! dear child ! if we only firmly believe 
it ! " Thereupon the little maiden with anxious 


looks asked her father " If he did not beheve 
it ? " And Dr. Martin Luther observed, " The 
dear children hve in innocence, know not of sin, 
live without any anger, avarice, or unbelief, and 
are therefore joyful and of a good conscience, 
fear no danger, be it of war, pestilence, or death. 
And what they hear of Christ and of the future 
life they believe simply, without any doubt, and 
speak joyfully about it. Therefore Christ ear- 
nestly appeals to us to follow their example. 
For the children really believe, and therefore 
Christ holds little children and their childlike 
ways dear." 


Y little Magdalene and Hans pray effe6lu- 
ally even for me and many Christians. 

CHILDREN under seven years old have the 
most joyful dying. They have not yet 
learned the fear of death. 

one of his little children in its aunt's 
arms, and said, " Go thy way, and be good. 
Money I shall not bequeath thee, but I shall 
leave thee a rich God. He will not forsake thee." 


C/iildrcfi should be iarighi at Ho77te. 

UBLIC sermons do little for children ; they 
bring little from them, unless in the school 


and at home they are diligently examined as to 
what they have learned. 

"TT rOMEN," he said, "are eloquent by na- 
V V ture, and are well skilled in rhetoric, in 
the art of persuading, which men have to learn 
and conquer with great pains." 

"TV^ATHE," he said to his wife, "you have 
Xv. a good husband who loves you. You 
are an empress." And of her he said he held 
her dearer than the kingdom of France, and the 
dukedom of Venice. 

HE said once, " When women embrace the 
do6lrine of the Gospel they are far stronger 
and more fervent in the faith, and hold it more 
firmly than men, as we see in the good An as- 
tasia ; and Magdalene's heart vv^as more stead- 
fast than Peter's. 


WHEN schools flourish, all flourishes, and 
the Church remains upright. Schools 
preserve the Church. 

Pr inline^, 

PRINTING is siinuninn ct postremtmi dotmm 
through which God sends forth the Gospel. 
It is the last flicker of the flame before the ex- 



tinguishing of the world. The world, thank 
God, is near its end. The holy Fathers who 
have fallen asleep would have desired to see 
this day of the unveiled Gospel. 



I ^ 

HERE is no doubt that many seeds of 
excellent virtues are in those souls 
who love music ; but those who love it 
not, I hold to resemble sticks and 
stones. For we know that music is hateful and 
intolerable to the demons. And I fully deem, and 
am not ashamed to assert, that after Theology 
there is no art which can be compared to music. 
For she alone, after Theology, produces that which 
otherwise Theology alone can produce, a glad and 
quiet heart. Wherefore the devil, author of sad 
cares, and of crowds of disquiets, flies at the voice 
of music, as he flies at the word of Theology. 

THE devil is a sad spirit, and makes men 
sad ; therefore he cannot endure cheerful- 
ness. That is why he flies as far as he can from 
music, remains not where there is singing, espe- 

MUSIC. 237 

cially of hymns. Thus David softened Saul's 
temptation by his harp. 

DOCTOR MARTIN said, in the year 1541, 
that music is a glorious and divine gift, 
which is altogether hostile to the devil, and many 
temptations and desponding cogitations may be 
driven away thereby, for the devil cannot endure 

MUSICAL notes make the text living. 
They drive away the spirit of depression. 
Some of the kings, princes, and nobles must 
maintain musicians ; for it becomes great poten- 
tates and rulers to preserve free, noble arts and 

MUSIC is the best refreshment of a troubled 
man, whereby his heart is again brought 
into peace, invigorated, and refreshed. 

MUSIC is a discipline, and a mistress of order 
and good manners ; she makes the people 
milder and gentler, more moral and more reason- 

IN the year 1538, on the 17th of December, 
when Dr. Martin had the singers as his 
guests, and they sang beautifully lovely motets 
and pieces, he said with admiring wonder : 
" If our Lord God has poured forth such gifts 


in this poor fallen life, what will it be in that 
eternal life, where all will be the pleasantest and 
most perfe6l ? Here we have only the begin- 

MUSIC has always been dear to me. Who- 
ever is capable of this art, is of a good 
kind, is capable of all things good. Music must 
be kept up in schools. A schoolmaster must be 
able to sing, otherwise I will not look at him. 
Nor should men be ordained preachers until 
they have been well tried and exercised in the 

ONCE when a choice motet of Senfl's was 
sung. Dr. Martin admired and praised it 
much, and said, " I could not compose such a 
motet, if I were to strain myself to any extent 
to do it ; and he on the other hand could not 
explain a Psalm as I can. Thus the gifts of the 
Spirit are manifold, as in the body there are 
many members. But no one is content with his 
gifts. Each member wishes to be the whole body, 
not one member." 

ONCE, as they were singing the Passion, Dr. 
Martin listened attentively, and said, 
'" Music is a precious, beautiful gift of God. Often 
it has so awakened and moved me, that I have 
been filled with the desire to preach." 

MUSIC. 239 

MUSIC is a beautiful, glorious gift of God, 
and ranks next to Theology. The young 
should be exercised in this art, for it makes 
capable men. 

SINGING is the best art and exercise. It has 
nothing to do with the world, is nothing be- 
fore the tribunals, or in matters of strife. Sing- 
ers are not anxious and careful but joyful, and 
with singing drive cares away. 

DOCTOR MARTIN said once to a harper, 
" My friend, play me a song, as David did. 
I think, if David rose from the dead now, he 
would wonder to find how far we have advanced 
with music. It was never better than now." 

WHEN David struck the harp it must have 
been like the Magnificat in the Eighth 
Tone, for David can scarcely have had a Dcca- 

HOW is it that on earthly things we have 
many a fine poem and carmen ; and on 
spiritual things such poor cold things } 

WHOEVER despises music, as all fanatics 
do, with him I am not content. For 
music is a gift of God, not of man. It drives 
away the devil and makes people joyful. Through 
music one forgets all anger, impurity, pride, and 



Other vices. Next to Theology I give to music 
the highest place and honor. And we see how 
David and all the Saints have wrought their 
godly thoughts into verse, rhyme, and song, quia 
pads tempore regnat musica. 

lart jFourtfj. 





Passio optima A5lio, 

EVER do we do more and in a holier 
way than when we know not how 
much we do. 

Never do we do worse than when we 
know what and how much we do ; for it is im- 
possible that we should not be pleased with our- 
selves. The stain of glory and ambition soils 
such works, so that our praise of God is no 
longer pure. Idco est passio optima a6lio. 
Suffering is the best work. 


The Cross. 
HE Cross of Christ is divided throughout 
the whole world. To each his portion 


ever comes. Thou, therefore, cast not thy por- 
tion from thee, but rather take it to thee as a 
most sacred reHc ; and lay it up, not in a golden 
or silver shrine, but in a golden heart, a heart 
clothed in gentle charity. 

For if the wood of the cross is so consecrated 
by conta6l with the flesh and blood of Christ, 
that it is held the choicest of relics, how much 
more are persecutions, sufferings, and the unjust 
hatred of men (whether of the just or the unjust), 
most sacred relics ; sacred not by the touch of 
His flesh, but embraced, kissed, blessed, and to 
the utmost consecrated by the charity of His 
godlike will, and of His most loving heart, 
whereby the curse is transformed into blessing, 
and injury into justice, and suffering into glory, 
and the cross into joy. — 1516. 

LET no one lay on himself a cross, or desire 
a trial. But if one comes on him let him 
suffer it, and know absolutely that it shall be 
good and profitable to him. 

IF tribulation takes all away from us, it still 
leaves God ; for it can never take God away. 
Nay, indeed, it brings God to us. 

The Peace of God under the Cross. 

HEALTH and peace to thee, but not such 
as are manifest to the senses of men, but 


hidden under the cross, and passing all under- 
standing in the Lord. 

Thou seekest and cravest peace, but vainly. 

For as the world giveth, seekest thou ; not as 
Christ giveth. 

Dost thou not know that God is wonderful in 
His people, and placeth His peace in the midst 
of no peace, that is, of all temptations } As it 
is said, *' Reign TJlojc in the midst of Thine ene- 
mies T 

Not he, therefore, hath peace whom none 
troubleth ; this is the peace of the world ; but 
he whom all men and all things trouble, yet who 
beareth all these things quietly, with joy. 

Thou sayest with Israel, " Peace, peace, and 
there is no peace." Say rather with Christ : The 
Cross, the Cross, and there is no cross. For 
the cross ceaseth to be the cross as soon as 
thou canst contentedly say. Crux benedicta, inter 
legna nullum tale, 

" Blessed Cross, in all earth's forests 
Grows no other wood like thine." 

See, then, how faithfully the Lord is leading thee 
to true peace, who surroundeth thee with so many 

It is called " the peace of God which passeth 
all understanding ; " that is, which is not known 
by feeling or perception, or thinking. All our 
thinking cannot attain nor understand it ; none 
but those who of free-will take up the Cros** 


laid on them, — these, tried and troubled in all 
they feel and think and understand, afterward 
experience this peace. For all our feeling, all 
our labor, all our thinking He has estimated 
below this peace of His, and has affixed it to the 
Cross ; that is, to many and disquieting troubles. 
Thus it is a peace above sense and all else 
that we pi6lure and desire, indeed better far 
beyond all comparison than these. Seek, there- 
fore, this peace of His, and thou shalt find. But 
thus shalt thou seek it best ; not by seeking and 
choosing a peace according to thine own opinion 
and understanding, but by taking up thy troubles 
with joy, as sacred relics. — a. d. 15 16. 

Chastening — Entreating, 

IF a father do sharply corre6l his son, it is as 
much as if he said, " My son, I pray thee to be 
a good child." 

It seemeth indeed to be a corre61ion, but if you 
regard the father's heart, it is a gentle and ear- 
nest beseeching. 

Heaviness of Heart, 

ST. PAUL confesseth that God had mercy on 
him, in that he restored Epaphroditus, so 
weak and near unto death, unto health again, lest 
he should have sorrow upon sorrow. 

Therefore, besides outward temptations, it is 
evident that the Apostles also suffered great an- 
guish, and heaviness, and fear. 


Trial the Interpreter of Scripture. 

teaches ; as saith Sirach, " He who is not 
tried, what does he know ? " 

None understand the Scriptures save those 
who prove them by the Cross. 

Our Queer e not always answered here. 

C'^ OD will give us all things in Christ, that He 
J Himself may be ours, if we humble our- 
selves in true faith before Him. 

But we will not, and go about with Qttcere : 
Why God does this or suffers that ? For we also 
would play our part in the game. 

The Qucere answered hereafter. 

WHEN Dr. Martin was once asked why 
God did many things of which no one 
could find out the reason ; "Ah !" he said, "we 
have not power to understand all that God does. 
He wills not that we should know all He pur- 
poses. As He said to Peter, ' What I do thou 
knowest not now, but thou shalt know hereafter ' 
(/;/ that joyful Day). Then shall we first truly 
understand how faithfully and kindly God has 
meant with us, even through misfortune, anguish, 
and necessity. Meantime we must look with 
sure confidence to Him, that He will not suffer 
us to be really harmed in body or soul, but will 


deal with us so that, good or bad, all must work 
for the best." 

£^ven as a Father the Son in whom He 

GOD deals not otherwise than a father with 
his son and his servant. The son he cor- 
re6ls and smites far oftener than the servant, but 
meantime He is gathering a treasure for him to 
inherit. But a bad, disobedient servant he does 
not smite with the rod ; he drives him from the 
house, and gives him no inheritance. 

Better anything from God than Silence. 

" (^\ H my God ! punish far rather with pes- 
V^ tilence, with all the terrible sicknesses 
on earth, with war, with anything rather than that 
Thou be silent to us." 

Flying to God in Sorrow, not from Him, 

IT must at last come to this, that we no longer 
fly from God as from an executioner. For 
if we fear and fly Him, zvith zvhom shall we take 
refuge? If we lose Him, all is lost. 

ViHory by Submission, 

WHOEVER can earnestly from the heart 
humble himself before God, and acqui- 
esce in His chastening, has already won the vic- 
tory. Otherwise our Lord God would lose His 


Godhead. He is merciful, gracious, patient, of 
great goodness, and His own prerogative and 
work it is to have pity on the wretched, to com- 
fort the sorrowful, not to despise the anguished, 
smitten heart ; to help them to right that suffer 
wrong, to give grace to the lowly. 

REST IN THE Lord ; wait patiently for 
Him. In Hebrew (said Dr. Luther), be 
silent to God, and let Him mould thee. Keep 
still, and He will mould thee to the right shape. 

David singing Psalms in Trial. 

WHEN David could remedy an evil he did 
his utmost to that end ; but when he knew 
of no counsel nor help against a thing, he had to 
exercise patience ; and he made a song to God 
about it, sang it, and called on Him. 

David had worse devils to contend against 
than we have, for he had such great revelations 
as cannot be had without great temptations. 
David made Psalms and sang them. We also, 
as well as we can, will make psalms, and sing 
them to the glory of our God, and in defiance 
of the devil and the world. 

" A T ^HEN I am pressed with thoughts," said 
VV Dr. Martin once, "about worldly or 
home cares, I take a Psalm, or a saying of Paul, 
and go to sleep on it." 



THE holy Cross, temptation, and persecution 
teach the golden art ; but flesh and blood 
can never like them, would fain have peace and 

Our Lessons need to be learned over and 


WHEN one trial is over, another soon 
comes, against which we have to arm 
ourselves. And when the second comes, we 
bear ourselves just as in the first, as if we had 
never been tried before, become griev-ed and 
distressed, and sink beneath it, are no more 
learned than before, although we have had ex- 
perience before. We soon forget. 

Thus the Evangelist rebukes us, saying, " And 
they understood not, neither remembered the 
miracle of the loaves." 

But St. Paul exhorts us " not to be wearied or 
faint in our minds," when one trial follows, and 
one billow chases another, for thus our flesh is 
disciplined, for our good. 

" The Order of Christr 

BARLEY has much to suffer from men. For 
it is cast into the earth, where it perishes. 
Then when it has sprung up and ripened it is cut 
and mown down. Afterward it is crushed and 
dried, and pressed, fermented, and brewed into 


Just such a martyr also is linen or flax. When 
it is ripe it is plucked, steeped in water, beaten, 
dried, hacked, spun, and woven into linen, which 
again is rent or worn out. Afterwards it is 
made into plasters for sores and used for bind- 
ing up wounds. Then it becomes lint, and is 
laid under the stamping-machines in the paper- 
mill, and torn into small bits. From this they 
make paper for writing and printing. 

These creatures, and many others like them, 
which are of great use to us, must thus suffer. 
So also must all good and godly Christians suf- 
fer much from the ungodly and wicked. 

David, for instance, was a wonderfully gifted 
man, and he had to be ploughed and crushed. 
But such a man is dear to God. 

Christ more compassionate than any Chris- 

SCHLAINHAUFFEN complained of his 
trials, on the right hand and on the left. 
Dr. Luther said, "That the devil can do in a 
masterly way ; otherwise he were no devil. 
Come to me, dear friend, to Philip, to Cordatus, 
and believe that we will surely comfort you with 
God's Word. But if you expert good from 
me, what may you expect from Christ, who 
died for you t Ah, if you would only look for 
good thus from Him, who is a thousand times 
better than me, or Philip, or Cordatus ! " 


A CHRISTIAN should be a joyful man. 
We must suffer many things from within and 
from without, both from the world and the devil. 
But let them pass ; be of good cheer, call on- 
God, and have patience. He is a help in need, 
will not leave thee comfortless and helpless, or 
suffer thee to be overwhelmed and ruined in 
trial. Trials are good and needful for us, that 
God's power may be the stronger in our weakness. 
See how faint-hearted the dear holy patriarchs, 
prophets, apostles were ! What then could we 
poor, feeble little worms expe6l to be in such a 
godless world, when godliness, faith, and love are 
grown so cold, and well-nigh extinguished t Yet 
God upholds the Church in a wonderful way. 

The Types set in this Life to be read in the 


ON the 8th of August, in the year 1538, Dr. 
Martin, and also his wife, lay sick of a fever. 
Then he said, " God has smitten me rather hard. 
I have also been impatient, because I am ex- 
hausted by so many and such severe illnesses. 
But God knows better what end it serves than we 
ourselves do. Our Lord God is like a printer, 
who sets the letters backward. We see and feel 
Him set the types, but here we cannot read 
them. When we are printed off yonder in the 
life to come, we shall read all clear and straight- 
forward. Meantime we must have patience. 


IT may be admitted that Purgatory works in 
this Hfe, in its si)here. True Christians are 
cleansed and purged therein. 

THE sicknesses of the heart are the true 
sicknesses, such as depression, temptations, 
etc. I am a very Lazarus, well exercised in such 
sickness as this. 

WE who are baptized must endure and suffer 
both a6lively and passively from God, who 
creates and works all in us ; and also from the 
devil and the world, who will torment and vex us. 

ONCE when Master George Rorer's children 
lay ill, Dr. Martin said, " Our Lord God af- 
fli6ls all His saints. They must all drink of that 
cup. He dealt thus even with Mary His mother. 
All dear to Him must learn to endure. Chris- 
tians conquer when they suffer. When they 
resist they lose the day." 

The Barley and Flax again. 

WE must suffer. For as the barley from 
which beer is made, and the flax from 
which linen is made, must suffer much ere they 
are fit for use, and the end is attained for which 
they are sown, so must Christians suffer much, 
must be sown, torn (like flax), crushed and win- 
nowed (like corn). For the slaying of the old 
Adam goes before the glorifying. If we are 


to be saved, and to come to glory, we must first 
die and be slain. 

The hicarnation the greatest Co7tsolation in 


THIS highest benefit and mystery, that the 
Son of God condescends to become man 
and my brother, no power of eloquence can utter, 
no human thought can fully grasp. 

He Himself so binds Himself, so unites Him- 
self to me, with a tie so close and enduring, that 
no man on earth, by the firmest bonds of the 
closest friendship, by the holiest rights of the 
nearest kindred, could be related to me more truly, 
or devoted to me more intimately. From Him I 
may and should expe6l greater things than from 
the person in the world most devoted to me ; 
because His love to me is to an infinite extent 
more fervent than the love of the most tried and 
steadfast friend, than the love of brother to 
brother, than any love on earth. 

HE could rejoice like me. He could mourn 
and even wonder like me. Not only has 
He taken upon Himself the body but the soul 
of man, so that it was in real earnest He mar- 
velled at the centurion's faith. 

There is no article of our Faith that sustains 
us in all trial like this. 



Christ suffering in Christians, 


UR most blessed Saviour and most 
gracious Master has commanded us 
all to visit the sick, to set free those 
that are bound, and to fulfil all works 
of mercy towards our neighbors. As Christ 
Himself, our Lord, with the example of a won- 
derful love, to manifest and prove the same, 
came down from the bosom of the most High 
Father, humbled Himself into our prison, took 
on Himself our infirmities, served and toiled 
for our sins, as He says in Isaiah, '* Thou hast 
made Me to serve with thy sins. Thou hast 
wearied Me with thine iniquities." 

And whosoever despiseth this most dear, fair, 
and loving example, and this most holy command, 
will surely hear at the Last Day, " Depart, ye 


cursed, into everlasting fire. I was sick and ye 
visited Me not," as one perverted by the basest 
ingratitude, in not showing, in his Uttle measure, 
to his neighbor that which with so great a 
perfe6lion of mercy he received from the Lord 

Therefore, I may not negle6l, without the guilt 
of such ingratitude, this form and likeness of 
my Lord Christ, in your Grace's sickness. It is 
to me as if I heard from the body and flesh of 
your Grace, the voice of Christ calling to me 
and saying, " I am sick." For it is not the 
Christian man only who is sick when he is sick, 
but Christ our Lord and Saviour, in whom the 
Christian lives, as He Himself says, ** In that 
ye did it to the least of these my brethren, ye 
did it unto Me." 

To Justus MeniuSy 
IN Luther's own sickness. — 1520. 

I PRAY thee, cease not to pray for me and to 
console me ; for this agony is beyond my 

Christ has hitherto been my faithful Pre- 
server, neither do I despair that such He will 
be forever. Not only have I been sick in body, 
but far more in spirit, so does Satan with his 
angels weary me, by the permission of God our 
Saviour. Therefore I commend myself to your 
prayers, certain that the Lord will hear you, and 
will trample Satan under our feet. Amen. 


I would have written to Ickelsamer, but the 
weakness of my head does not permit me to 
occupy myself with studies ; but tell him before 
he asks it, that I will know nothing against him ; 
as also I will have compassion on all my other 
enemies, and will know nothing against them ; 
even as I trust Christ and the righteous Father 
may have compassion on me, and will know 
nothing against me. 

Zwingli and iEcolompadius have answered, but 
I have not read, nor can I read until I am re- 
stored ; I am altogether idling and taking holi- 
day, as a languid Lazarus and patient of Christ. 

To Agricola. — 1527. 

SATAN has raged against me with all his 
fury ; yea, the Lord has set me up before 
him like another Job, as a mark ; he tempts me 
with a marvellous feebleness of spirit, but through 
the prayers of the saints I shall not be left in 
his hands, although the wounds of spirit which 
I have received can with difficulty be healed. 

My hope is that this my agony is for the sake 
of many ; my life is that I know and glory that 
I have taught the Word of Christ purely and 
sincerely for the salvation of many, and that 
therefore it is that Satan burns against me, and 
desires to see me submerged and ruined ; me, 
with the Word. 


To comfort his Father in his last Sick- 
ness. — 1530. 

A GREAT joy it would be to me if you 
would come to me with my mother. My 
Kathe also begs it with tears, and all of us. 

God has sealed the faith in you, and confirmed 
it, with signs following, namely : that for my 
sake you have suffered much calumny, shame, 
scorn, mockery, hatred, and danger. 

These are the true stigmata (the marks of the 
wounds), whereby we must become like our 
Lord Christ. 

So now, in your weakness, let your heart be 
fresh and comforted ; for we have yonder, in that 
life with God, a sure, true Helper, Jesus Christ, 
who for us has overcome sin and death, who is 
sitting there for us, and with all the angels is 
looking upon us, and is waiting for us, when we 
journey forth, that we may have no care nor fear 
lest we should sink or fall. He has too great 
power over sin and death than that they should 
do anything to harm us ; and He is so heart-true 
and good, that He neither can nor will forsake 
us. Only let lis, without doubting, desire this. 

But if it is His divine will that you should not 
longer linger away from that better life, and 
should no further suffer with us in this troubled 
valley of many sorrows, nor here any more see 
and hear distress, nor with all Christians here 


help any longer to suffer and conquer. He will 
surely give you grace to receive all willingly and 

Herewith I commend you to Him who holds 
you dearer than you hold yourself, and has shown 
you such love that He has taken your sin on 
Himself, and atoned for it with His blood, and 
has let you know this through the Gospel, and 
has given you to believe it through His Spirit. 

Whatever happens, let Him care. He will 
make all right ; yea, He has already done all 
things for the very best, better than we can 

The same our dear Lord and Saviour be with 
you, and grant us to see each other again joyfully 
here or yonder. * For our faith is sure, and we 
doubt not that we shall see each other again 
with Christ, in a little while, since the departure 
from this life to God is far less than if I parted 
from you and went from Mansfeld hither, or than 
if you departed from me from Wittenberg to 
Mansfeld. A little hour of sleep, and all is 

To Margaret^ Princess of Anhalt, in Sickness. 

SINCE now your princely Grace is visited 
and heavy-laden with sickness by our dear 
Father in heaven, who has made us, and given 
us soul and body, and also, through His dear 

* See page 18. 


Son Jesus Christ, has redeemed us from the fall 
and death of Adam, and by His Holy Spirit has 
planted the hope of eternal life in our hearts, 
your Grace must not be distressed, but receive 
this visitation with thankfulness. For we who 
believe on Him are no more our own, but His 
who died for us. If we are sick it is not to our- 
selves ; if we are well, it is not to ourselves ; go 
with us how it may, it is all not to ourselves but to 
Him who has died for us, and made us His own. 
As with a good child, if it is sick and suffers, 
its sickness is more to its parents than to itself ; 
so is it with us and Him who has redeemed us 
with His blood and death. And in this faith, 
though we die, we die not ; though we are sick, 
we are not sick, but whole to Christ, in whom 
all that according to the flesh seems to us sick, 
feeble, dead, and lost, is sound, fresh, living, 
and blessed. He is Almighty on whom we 

" 1\ /r Y TIMES ARE IN Thy HAND." This say- 
..VX ing I learned in my sickness, and will 
corre6l and alter my interpretation of it ; for be- 
fore I put it off as belonging only to the day of 
death. But it means this : In Thine hand is 
my time, that is, my whole life, all my days, 
hours, and moments. As if he should say, " My 
health, sickness, misfortune, prosperity, life, death, 
joy, sorrow, all are in Thy hands, as also experi- 
ence shows." 



F trial makes us impatient, then the devil 
laughs and is glad. 

IN the year 1536, on the i8th of July, after the 
sermon. Dr. Martin Luther went to visit an 
honorable, pious matron who had been exiled 
from Leipzig. On the way her husband had 
been drowned, and she had fallen into such heart- 
anguish and sorrow that in one night she had 
fainted away fifteen times. When the Do6lor en- 
tered, she received him cordially and said, " Oh, 
dear Herr Do6lor, how can I merit such kind- 
ness from you } " 

He answered and said : " It was long since 
merited. Christ Jesus with His blood has done 
and merited far more than this." 

Then he asked how it was with her, and 
entreated that she would be content with the 
will of God, and suffer it with patience, as 
the chastening of a Father who had redeemed 
her. " Dear daughter," said he, " be at peace, 
and suffer the Father's chastening, let it be for 
death or life, as it pleases God whom we love. 
For, living or dying, we are His, as he says, 
* Because I live, yesJialllive also! He has given you 
a costly treasure in this suffering. He will also give 
you to bear it patiently. Therefore pray diligently." 

Thereupon she answered in a right Chris- 
tian way, that " she was indeed at peace ; she 
knew God meant well, and as a Father with her, 
and would give her patience to bear the Cross." 


So the Do6lor departed from her, giving her 
his blessing, and committed her to the care 
and keeping of our good God. 

IN the year 1536, on the 4th of August, he 
visited Benedi6la, the widow of the Burgo- 
master of Wittenberg, and he said to her : " Dear 
friend, you will have patience, and willingly bear 
the will of God, which is good and holy ; for the 
body must suffer and die. But we have this great 
comfort and prerogative, that we may commit the 
dear soul into the bosom of Him who has re- 
deemed us. This consolation the world has 

HE once visited a chancery-writer at Torgau, 
who was a good, diligent man, comforted 
him, and bade him be of good heart and keep to 
the physician's dire6lions, and commend his soul 
to the faithful Creator ; " for," said he, " we may 
well be glad to die ; we have lived long enough, 
save that we may have to live yet a while longer 
for the sake of others." 

ONCE when Dr. Martin lay ill himself, and 
the physician felt his pulse, and found 
him changed for the worse, he said, " Here I am. 
I stand and rest here on the will of God. To 
Him I have entirely given myself up. He will 
make it all right. For this I know certainly ; I 
shall not die, for He is the Resurre6lion and the 


Life, and whosoever liveth and believeth on 
Him shall never die, and even if he die he shall 
live. Therefore I commit it all to His will, and 
leave Him to order all." 

an honorable matron who lay in sore sick- 
ness, and he comforted her thus : 

" Muhme Lene, do you know me .^ Do you 
recognize me .'' " And when she signified that 
she knew and understood, he said to her^ " Your 
faith rests wholly and entirely on the Lord 

Then he added : 

" He is the Resurre6lion and the Life. You 
will lose nothing. You will not die, but fall 
asleep as in a cradle. And when the morning 
dawns, you will rise again and live forever." 

She said, " Yes." 

Then the Doctor asked her, and said : 

"Have you any temptation V 

She said, " No." 

" How .? Does nothing indeed trouble you } " 

" Yes," she said, " I have a pain in my heart." 

Then he said, " The Lord will soon redeem 
you from all evil. You will not die." 

And he turned to us and said : 

'• Oh, how well it is with her ! For this is not 
death. It is sleep." 

And he went to the window and prayed. 


At mid-day he left her ; and at seven in the 
evening she softly fell asleep in Christ. 

Ltcthers Way of visiting the Sick, 

WHEN Dr. Martin Luther came to visit a 
sick person in his weakness, he was wont 
to speak very gently to him; to bend down close 
to him, and first to ask him about his sickness, 
what ailed him, how long he had been ill, what 
physician he had seen, and what treatment had 
been prescribed for him. 

Then he began to ask if he had been patient 
toward God under this sickness. And if he 
found that the sick person had borne his sick- 
ness patiently, as sent to him by the gracious 
and fatherly will of God, that he felt he deserved 
this chastening for his sins, and was willing, if 
it was the will of God, to die, then Dr. Luther 
began heartily to commend this Christian will 
and disposition as the work of the Holy Spirit. 
And he was wont to say it was a great gift 
of God when any one attained in this life the 
true knowledge of God and faith in Jesus Christ 
our only Saviour, and could yield up his will to 
the will of God ; and he would exhort the sick 
person to keep steadfast in this faith, through 
the help of the Holy Spirit, and would promise 
himself to pray earnestly for him to God. 

If the sufferer thanked him for this kindness, 
and said he did not deserve that he should 
visit him, the Do6lor would say, " It was his 


office and duty, and it was needless to thank 
him ; " and then would comfort him, saying he 
should be of good cheer, and fear nothing, for 
God was his gracious God and Father, and had 
given letters and seals to assure us, through His 
Word and Sacraments, that we poor sinners are 
redeemed from the devil and hell, because the 
Son of God willingly gave Himself up to death 
for us, and has reconciled us to God. 




To Maria Queen of Hiingary on the Death of Jier 
Husband, Lonis II., King of Htmgary, 

[Who was defeated and slain in battle against the Turks, a.d. 



IT. PAUL writes to the Romans that 
the Holy Scriptures are Scriptures 
of consolation, and teach us patience. 
Wherefore I have now sent forth 
these same Psalms to comfort your Majesty (as 
far as God comforts us, and enables us to com- 
fort others). In this great and sudden misfortune 
and anguish wherewith the Almighty God at this 
time visits your Majesty, not in anger or displea- 
sure, but to chasten and to try ; that your Majesty 
may learn to trust alone in the true Father who 
is in heaven ; and to comfort yourself in the true 
Bridegroom Jesus Christ, who is also Brother to 


each one of us, yea, our flesh and blood ; and to 
rejoice in those true friends and faithful compan- 
ions the dear angels, who are around us, and 
who are ministering to us. 

For although it is indeed a heavy, bitter death 
to your Majesty, and must indeed be so, so 
early widowed and despoiled of your dear con- 
sort, yet will the Scriptures, especially the Psalms, 
give you much good comfort, richly mani- 
festing to you the sweet, gracious Father and Son 
in whom the sure and eternal life lies hidden. 

And, indeed, whosoever can attain to see and 
feel the Father's love to us in the Scriptures, 
he can easily bear all the unhappiness that can 
be on earth. On the contrary, he who feels 
not thus, can never be truly glad, though he 
were bathed in all the delights and joys of the 

Verily, to no man can such sorrow come, as to 
God the Father Himself, when His beloved Son, 
in return for all His miracles and mercies, was 
wounded, spit upon, cursed, and made to die the 
most shameful of all deaths upon the Cross ; 
although to each of us his own misery seems 
the greatest, and goes more to the heart than 
the Cross of Christ. 

On the Death of the Wife of Capcllaims. 

CHRIST did not hear our prayers and tears 
for her preservation ; but at the last He 
comforted us, when, with the best end, that is, 


full of faith and strong in spirit, she emigrated 
to Christ. 

To Co7irad Cordatus^ on the Loss of a Soiu 

GRACE and peace in Christ, who will con- 
sole thee in this thy low estate and sor- 
row, my Cordatus ; for who else can assuage 
such a grief? Easily, indeed, do I believe all 
that thou writest, knowing how such a loss goes 
into the heart of a father, sharper than any 
sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder 
of the joints and marrow. 

Yet, on the other hand, thou shouldst remem- 
ber it is nothing marvellous if He who is more 
truly and essentially the Father than thou wert, 
in His love, chose rather to have thy son, who 
is verily His son, with Himself than with thee. 
For he is safer there than here. 

But this I write in vain. As a fable to the 
deaf are words to recent grief ; wherefore, now, 
yield to thy grief ; for greater and better than 
we have mourned with such a mourning, nor 
were they reproved. 

It is good, nevertheless, for thee to have reached 
once that wilderness of temptation, and to have 
learned the force of thine own feelings, that 
thou mayest learn the better in thyself what is 
the strength of the Word of faith. 

Greet her who is the sharer of thy grief, and 
meanwhile rejoice more in Christ living, than ye 


mourn over your son dead. Yea, himself also 
living, though withdrawn from you. 

To Melanchthon 


TO-DAY Hans Reinicke has written me 
that my most dear father departed from 
this life, on the Sunday exaudi, at one o'clock. 

This death has thrown me altogether into 
mourning ; remembering not only the natural 
tie, but his most gentle tenderness to me, for 
from him my Creator gave me whatsoever I am 
and have. Although it comforts me that he writes 
me he fell asleep most sweetly in the faith of 
Christ, yet the memory of his most sweet converse 
has been such a shock to my heart, that scarcely 
ever before did I so contemn death. But " the 
righteous is taken away from the evil to come, 
and enters into rest." 

So many times, indeed, do we die before we 
die once. I now succeed to the inheritance of 
the name, for I am the eldest Luther in my 
family. To me, now, is due not only the chance, 
but the right to follow him into the Kingdom 
of Christ, which may He benignantly grant to 
us all. 

Therefore further I will not write to thee, for 
it is meet and dutiful that I, a son, should mourn 
for such a father, from whom the Father of mercy 
formed me, and through the sweat of whose 
brow He trained and fed me to be such as I am. 


I rejoice that he lived in these times, so that 
he might see the Hght of Truth. 

Blessed be God in all His a6ls and counsels for- 
ever. Amen. 

To N, Link^ 


GRACE and peace in Christ our Lord. My 
dear Friend — I think the tidings must by 
this time have reached you that your dear son 
Johannes Link, who was sent hither to us to 
study, was seized with heavy sickness, and al- 
though, indeed, no kind of pains and care and 
medical skill have been spared for him, never- 
theless the sickness proved too strong for him, 
and has borne him hence, and brought him to 
our Lord Jesus Christ in heaven. 

He was a dear boy to us all, especially to me ; 
for many an evening have I had him to sing the 
Descant in my house. Very quiet and gentle 
he was, and especially diligent in study, so that 
it is sore to all our hearts that he is gone, and 
if it had been possible by any means, we would 
fain have rescued and retained him. But he was 
much dearer to God than to us, and He willed to 
have him at home. 

I know well how this event must distress and 
grieve your heart and your wife's, when it has so 
distressed us all, and especially me. Yet I en- 


treat you rather to thank God, who has given 
you such a good child, and has held you worthy 
to spend your means and pains so well on him. 

But this, most of all, must comfort you (as it 
comforts us), that he fell asleep so softly and se- 
renely (fell asleep rather than departed), with 
such a high confession, with such faith and con- 
sciousness, as were a wonder to us all ; so that 
there can be as little doubt as that the Christian 
religion can be false, that he is now forever 
blessed with God, his true Father. For such 
a Christian end cannot fail of the kingdom of 

You will also take to heart how much there is 
to make you thankful, and to comfort you in his 
not having died in a painful and violent way. 
And if he had lived a long life, with all your pains 
and cost, you could only have helped him a little 
to some office or ministry. But now he is in 
that place which he would not willingly ex- 
change for the whole world, not even for a mo- 

Therefore let your grief be such that your con- 
solation shall be more ; for ye have not lost him, 
but sent him before you, that he may be kept for- 
ever blessed. For thus saith St. Paul : " Sorrow 
not as others who have no hope." I know that 
Master Veit Dietrich, his preceptor, will write for 
you some of the beautiful words which he spoke 
before his end, which will please and comfort 
you. But from love to the dear bov I would not 


delay to send you this letter, that you may have 

sure testimony how it went with him. 

To Christ, our Lord and Comforter, in His 

grace, I commend you. 

St. George's Eve, 1532. 

D. M. L., with my own hand, though now weak. 

To Laurentius yoch^ Chancellor at Magde- 


VERILY, the Son of God had to suffer, not 
only from the devil and the evil world, 
but at last men said that He was affli6led by 
God. So must it be with us Christians, so that 
it may seem to the world that God chastens us, 
and that our enemies may boast and say, " That 
is the way your new Gospel is rewarded." 

It is indeed a great consolation that your wife 
departed in so Christian a way, and has gone 
without doubt to Christ her Lord, whom she 
learned to know here below. But it is also a 
great consolation that Christ has given you to 
be moulded into His likeness, to suffer not only 
from the devil, but also from God, who is and 
shall be your Comforter. 

Therefore, although the flesh complains and 
cries, as Christ Himself cried on God, and was 
weak, yet shall the spirit be ready and willing, 
and exclaim with unutterable sighing, " Abba, 
Father ! " that is, " Sharp is Thy rod, but Father 
art Thou still. This I know for a certainty." 


Our dear Lord and Saviour, who is also our 
dear Example and Pattern in all our suffering", 
comfort you, and imprint Himself on your heart, 
so that you may accomplish this sacrifice, from 
your smitten heart, and offer up your Isaac to 
Sunday affer All-Saints, 1532. 

To Laicrentms yoch. 


I HAVE read and perceived with joy that 
God has comforted your heart, even through 
the fellow-working of my letter. May the same 
gracious Father perfe6l the consolation He has 
begun. For we Christians must use ourselves 
to seek patience and comfort of the Scriptures. 

It is therefore that He often withdraws from 
us the consolationes reruni that the consolatiojies 
Scriphivamin may find space to work in us, and 
may no longer keep standing vainly outside, as 
a mere alphabet without exercise. 

We must turn our faces to the invisibilia 
gratice, and the Jioii appai'entia solatii. We must 
turn our backs on the visible things, that we 
may grow used to leave them and to depart from 

But the unwonted ever gives us pain, and the 
old Adam draws us back again to the visible. 
There would we fain rest and stay, but it cannot 
be. For " the things which are seen are tem- 



But both patience and consolation are God's 
works, impossible to our strength. This is the 
school of all Christians, This art they have to 
learn daily, and yet can they never apprehend 
it, much less learn it thoroughly, but remain 
always children, and say over and over again our 
A B C in this art. 

For the rest, where we fail, we must cling to 
the forgiveness of sins, and offer our sacrifice 
through Christ, with a Pater Noster, until that 
happy Day comes, and makes us perfe6l in all 
things. Then we shall be a goodly company, in 
all things like Christ our Pattern. 

Magdalene Liithers Illness a7id Death, 

N the 5th of September, 1542, Magdalene 
became ill, and Do6lor Luther wrote to 
Marcus Crodel : 

Grace and peace, my Marcus Crodel : I request 
that you will conceal from my son John what I 
am writing to you. My daughter Magdalene is 
literally almost at the point of death ; soon about 
to depart to her Father in heaven, unless it 
should yet seem fit to God to spare her. But 
she herself so sighs to see her brother, that I am 
constrained to send a carriage to fetch him. 
They loved each other indeed dearly. May she 
survive to his coming ; I do what I can, lest 
afterward the sense of having neglefted any- 
thing should torture me. Desire him, therefore, 


without mentioning the reason, to return hithei 
at once, with all speed in this carriage, hither 
where she will either be sleeping in the Lord, or 
will be restored. Farewell in the Lord. 

[Her brother came, but she was not restored.] 

As she lay very ill, Do6lor Martin said : 

" She is very dear to me ; but, gracious God, 
if it is Thy will to take her hence, I am content 
to know that she will be with Thee." 

And as she lay in the bed, he said to her : 

'' Magdalenchen, my little daughter, thou 
wouldst gladly stay with thy father here ; and 
thou wilt also gladly go to thy Father yonder." 

She said, " Yes, dearest father ; as God 

Then the father said : 

"Thou darling child, the spirit is willing, but 
the flesh is weak." 

Then he turned away and said : 

" She is indeed very dear to me ; if the flesh 
is so strong, what will the spirit be t " 

And among other things he said : 

" For a thousand years God has given no 
bishop such great gifts as He has given me ; for 
we must rejoice in God's gifts. I am angry with 
myself that I cannot rejoice from my heart for 
her and give thanks ; although now and then I 
can sing a little song to our Lord God, and thank 
Him a little for this. 

" But let us take courage. Living or dying we 
are the Lord's, Sive vivimus^ sive nioriinur, 


Dojnini suimis ; that is both in the genitive, ' the 
Lord's/ and in the nominative, lords," (To Mastei 
Rorer) : " Herr Magister, be of good cheer." 

Then Master George Rorer said: 

" I once heard a word from your reverence, 
which often comforts me, namely : * I have prayed 
our Lord God that He will give me a blessed dying 
hour, when I journey hence ; and He will also do 
it ; of that I feel sure. At my last hour I shall 
speak with Christ, my Lord, were it for ever so 
brief a time.' But I (said Master Rorer) have a 
fear that I shall depart hence suddenly, in silence, 
without being able to speak a word." 

Then Do61:or Martin Luther said : 

" Living or dying we are the Lord's. Equally 
so, whether you fell from the top of a stair, or 
were suddenly to die while you were sitting quiet- 
ly writing. It would not really harm me if I fell 
from a ladder and lay at its foot dead, for the 
devil is our enemy." 

When at last little Magdalene's countenance 
changed, and she lay at the point of death, her 
father fell on his knees by her bedside, wept bit- 
terly, and prayed that God would set her free. 

Then she departed, and fell asleep in her fa- 
ther's hands. 

Her mother was also in the room, but further 
off, on account of her grief. 

This happened a little after nine o'clock on the 
Wednesday of the Seventeenth Sunday after 
Trinity, Anno 1542. 


The Do6lor repeatedly said, as mentioned 
above, " I would fain keep my child, for she is 
very dear to me, if our Lord God would leave her 
with me. But His will be done. To her indeed 
nothing- better can happen." 

While she yet lived, he said to her : 

** Dear daughter, thou hast also a Father in 
heaven. Thou art going to him." 

Then Do6lor Philip said : 

" The love of parents is an image and type of 
the Godhead, engraven in the human heart. If 
then, as the Scriptures say, there is in God such 
great love to the human race, great as that of 
parents to their children, verily it is a great and 
fervent love." 

When she was now laid in the coffin. Dr. Mar- 
tin Luther said : 

" Thou dear Lenichen, how well it is with 

And as he gazed on her lying there, he said : 

"Ah, thou dear Lenichen, thou shalt rise 
again, and shine like a star, yes, like the sun." 

They had made the coffin too narrow and 
short for her, and he said : 

" The bed is too small for her, now that she 
has died. I am indeed joyful in spirit, but, after 
the flesh, I am very sad ; the flesh cannot bear 
it. Parting grieves one sorely, beyond measure. 
Wonderful it is to know that she is certainly at 
peace, and that all is well with her, and yet to be 
so sorrowful." 


And when the people who came to lay out the 
corpse, according to custom, spoke to the Do6lor 
and said they were grieved for his affli6lion, he 
said : 

"You should be pleased. I have sent a 
saint to heaven ; yes, a living saint ! Oh that 
we might have such a death. Such a death I 
would welcome this very hour." 

Then some one said : " Yes, that is indeed 
true ; yet each would fain keep his own." 

Do6lor Martin answered : 

" Flesh is flesh, and blood is blood. I am glad 
that she has passed over. There is no sorrow 
but that of the flesh." 

Afterward he said to others who came in : 

" Let it not grieve you. I have sent a saint 
to heaven. Yes, I have sent two thither." * 

As they were chanting by the corpse, " Lord, 
remember not against us our former sins which 
are of old ;" he said, " I say, O Lord, Lord, not only 
our former sins which are of old, but our pres- 
ent and aftual sins, for we are usurers, exa6lors, 
misers. Yea, the abomination of the mass is still 
in the world." 

* Alluding to the death of his infant child, Elizabeth, of whom 
he wrote in 1528 to Hausmann : 

" My little daughter is dead ; my darling little Elizabeth. It 
is strange how sick and wounded she has left my heart, almost as 
tender as a woman's, such pity moves me for that little one. I 
never could have believed before what is the tenderness of a 
father's heart for his children. Do thou pray to the Lord for 
me, in whom, farewell." 


When the coffin was closed and she was laid 
in the grave, he said : 

*' There is indeed the Resurre6lion of tlie 

And as they returned from the funeral, he 
said : 

" My daughter is now provided for, both in 
body and soul. We Christians have nothing to 
complain of ; we know it must be so. We are 
more sure of eternal life than of anything else. 
For God who has promised it to us for His dear 
Son's sake can never lie. Two saints of my 
flesh our Lord God has taken, but not of my 
blood. Flesh and blood cannot inherit the King- 

Among other things he said : 

" We must, however, provide for our children, 
and especially for the poor little maidens. We 
must not leave it to others to care for them. For 
the boys I have no mercy. A lad can maintain 
himself wherever he goes if he will only work ; 
and if he will not work he is a scoundrel. But 
the poor little maiden-folk must have a staff in 
their hands. 

And again : 

" I give this daughter very willingly to God. 
Yet after the flesh, I would have wished to keep 
her longer with me. But since He has taken her 
away I thank Him." 

The night before Magdalene died, her mother 
had a dream in which it seemed to her that two 


fair youths, gloriously apparelled, came and 
sought to lead her daughter away to her marriage. 

When on the next morning Philip Melanch- 
thon came into the cloister (Luther's home), and 
asked her how her daughter was, she told him her 

But he was alarmed at it, and said to others : 

" Those young men are the dear angels who 
will come and lead this maiden into the kingdom 
of heaven, to the true marriage. 

And on the same day indeed she died. 

Some little time after her death Dr. Martin 
Luther said : 

"If my daughter Magdalene would come to 
life again, and bring with her to me the Turkish 
kingdom, I would not have it so. Ah, she has 
made a good journey. Beati mortui qni in Domiiio 
moriuntiir. Who dies thus, surely has eternal 
life. I would that I and my children and ye all, 
my friends, could thus journey hence, for evil days 
are coming. There is neither help nor counsel 
more on earth, until the Last Day. I hope, if 
God will, it will not be long delayed ; for covetous- 
ness and usury increase." 

And often at supper he repeated, " Et miilti- 
plicata sunt mala in terrisT 

Luther s Epitaph on Magdalene. 

DORMIO cum san6lis hie Magdalena Lutheri 
Filia, et hoc strato te6la quiesco meo. 
Filia mortis eram, peccati semine nata, 

Sanguine sed vivo, Christe, redempta tuo. 



HERE sleep T, Lenichen, Dr. Luther's little daughter, 
Rest ■with all the Saints in my little bed : 
I who was born in sins, 
And must forever have been lost. 
But now I live, and all is well with mc, 
Lord Christ, redeemed with Thy blood. 

To y-iistits yo7ias. 

I THINK you will have heard that m}^ most clear 
daughter Magdalene is born again to the 
eternal Kingdom of Christ. But although I and my 
wife ought to do nothing but give thanks, rejoicing 
in so happy and blessed a departure, by which she 
has escaped the power of the flesh, the world, 
the Turk, and the devil ; yet such is the strength 
of natural affe6lion that we cannot part without 
groans and sobs of heart. They cleave to our 
heart ; they remain fixed in its depths ; her face, 
her words, the looks, living and dying, of that 
most dutiful and obedient child ; so that even 
the death of Christ (and what are all deaths in 
comparison with that .'') scarcely can efface her 
death from our minds. Do thou, therefore, give 
thanks to God in our stead. Wonder at the 
great work of God who thus glorifies our flesh ! 
She was, as thou knowest, gentle and sweet in 
disposition, and was altogether lovely. Blessed 
be the Lord Jesus Christ who called, and chose, 
and has thus magnified her ! I wish for myself 
and all mine, that we may attain to such a 
death ; yea, rather to such a life, which only I 


ask from God, the Father of all consolation and 

To yacob P^^obst^ Pastor at Bremen, 

MY most dear daughter Magdalene has de- 
parted to her Father in heaven. I have 
overcome that paternal passion of my grief; but 
not without quivering with vengeance against 
death, with which indignant passion I have as- 
suaged my tears. I loved her vehemently. But 
in that Day we shall be avenged on death, and 
on him who is the author of death. 

My Katha salutes thee, still sobbing, and with 
eyes wet with weeping. 

To Amsdorf. 

I THANK thee that thou hast sought to con- 
sole me on the death of my most dear daugh- 
ter. I loved her with a right and perfect love, 
not only because she was my flesh, but for her 
most placid and gentle spirit, ever so dutiful to 
me. But now I rejoice that she lives with her 
Father, in most sweet sleep, until that Day. 
And such as our times are, and worse as they will 
continue to become, I from my inmost heart de- 
sire for myself and for all men, for thee also and 
all dear to us, that a like hour of transition may 
be given to us, with so great faith, and such 
placid quiet to fall asleep in the Lord ; not to see 
death, nor to taste it, nor in the least degree to 


feel its terrors. I hope the time is now at hand 
of that word of Isaiah's : "The just are gathered 
and He down on their beds in peace," that when 
He gathereth the wheat into His garner, He 
may deUver the chaff to His fire. 

Katha salutes thee, still sobbing from time to 
time at the recollection of that most obedient child. 

To Lauterbach. 

THOU writest well, that in this most evil 
age death is indeed to be dcsu'ed (or rather 
sleep), for our daughters, and for all dear to us. 
And yet this departure of my most dear child 
has moved me not a little. Nevertheless I re- 
joice, sure that she, as a child of the Kingdom, 
has been snatched from the jaws of the devil 
and of the world, so sweetly did she fall asleep 
in the faith of Christ. 

To yustits yoiias 


WHAT to write I scarcely know, so has this 
sudden grief of thine prostrated me. 
A most sweet sharer of life have we all lost. 
She was not only, in truth, dear to me, but her 
most pleasant face, always full of consolation, 
was dear to us all, for we knew that in all which 
concerned us of good or ill, she did not only feel 
with us, but made it all her own to share and to 
bear. Bitter is this parting, when I had hoped 


she would be left after me, to be to all mine the 
first and chief comforter among all women, 

I am stunned by this great sorrow, when I 
remember her most gentle charafter, her most 
placid manner, her most faithful heart. I can- 
not restrain my sobs at the loss of such a wo- 
man, so surpassing in piety and honor, in mod- 
esty and all human kindness. What it must be 
to thee, from my own example I can easily 
measure. The flesh has no comfort for such a 
grief We must take refuge with the spirit, for 
with a happy ending of her course, she has gone 
before to Him who has called us all, and will 
bring us all through, to Himself, in His own 
blessed hour, from this misery and malice of the 
world. Amen. 

Meanwhile do thou, I entreat, so sorrow (for 
cause indeed there is), that thou keep in mind 
the common lot of us Christians, who although 
according to the flesh we are separated with 
most grievous rendings asunder, yet in that 
life shall see each other again, gathered and 
knit together in all those sweet unions of old, in 
Him who has so loved us that He has obtained 
that life for us with His own blood and death. 
Dying and behold we live, as saith Paul. 

It is well done for us, when with a pure faith 
in the Son of God we fall asleep. True indeed 
that thy greatest pity should be for those who 
live. We here, for a little while in sorrow, shall 
be received out of it into that unutterable joy, 


to which thy Katha and my Magdalene, with 
many others, have gone before us, and to which 
every day they call, exhort, and tenderly allure 
us that we may follow. 

To Wolf Heinze 


THIS very hour Dr. Jonas has told me that 
your dear Eva has gone home to God her 
Father. I can indeed feel how such a parting 
must go to your heart, and your heart-sorrow is 
indeed a grief of heart to me ; for you know 
that I have a deep and faithful love for you. I 
know also that God has love for you ; for His 
Son Jesus is dear to you. Therefore your grief 
moves me much. 

Now what shall we do t This life is thus 
based on sorrow that we may learn how little 
all misery is compared with the eternal misery 
from which the Son of God has redeemed us, 
He in whom we have our dearest Treasure, 
which abides with us forever, though all that is 
temporal, and we ourselves, must pass away. 

It is better with her now than where she was. 
God help you and all of us to journey thence 
after her, although without sorrow that journey, 
will not, cannot be made. 

To Hafts Reineck 


DEEP sorrow indeed must this be to you 
My heart also is very heavy for your sake 


But what can we do ? God has so ordered 
and balanced this Hfe, that therein we have to 
learn and pra6lise the knowledge of His Divine 
and perfeft will, so that we may prove ourselves 
whether we love and esteem His will more than 
cur own selves, and than all He has given us to 
love and possess on earth. 

And although the infinite goodness of His 
Divine will is hidden too high and deep, as is 
God Himself, from the old Adam, so that He 
can draw no delight or joy, but only mourning 
and wailing from it, yet we have His holy, sure 
Word, which reveals to us that hidden will, and 
makes it shine in our hearts ; as everywhere 
in the Scriptures He says to us, it is not in 
anger, but in grace, when He chastens His 

Therefore, since you have richly learned the 
Word of God, I hope you will know how to 
pra6tise it, that you have the more joy in God's 
grace and Fatherly will, and that the sorrow 
may not be to your hurt. 

It is, moreover, a high consolation that your 
wife departed in such a Christian way from this 
valley of sorrow. 

The dearest treasure on earth is a dear wife ; 
but a blessed end is a treasure beyond all trea- 
sures, and an eternal consolation. 

God help us all in a like way to journey from 
this sinful sepulchre of corruption to our true 
Home and Fatherland. 


To Gcorcre Hosel 


ON THE LOSS OF A SON. A.D. 1 544. 

OUR Saviour Christ saith, '^ It is not tJiewill 
of your heavenly Father that one of these 
little ones should perish.'' He adds also a sign, 
namely, that " Their angels do ahvays see the Face 
of God!' Therefore you must not doubt that 
your child is with our Saviour Christ and all the 
Blessed in joy. 

I also am a father, and have seen some of my 
children die. I have also seen other miseries 
greater than death, and I know that such things 
cause anguish. God wills that our children 
should be dear to us. He wills that we should 
weep for them. Yet the faith of the eternal joy 
must work consolation in us. 


To Ambrosiics Ber7idt 


HIS calamity is indeed a burning fire to 
thee, yet is there sweetness distilling 
from the very anguish. For it is well \vith her. 
She lives now with Christ. She has sprung 
forth (taken her spring into the other life.)" Ah, 
would to God that I also had taken that spring. 
I would not much wish myself here again. 

(Sie hat ihren Sprung gethan, O, wollt Gott 
dass ich den Sprung auch gethan hatte. Ich 
wollt mich nicht sehr herwieder sehnen.) 


ON the 1st of December, 1536, Dr. Martin 
Luther visited the Burgomaster Lucas 
Cranach (the painter), who was very sorrow- 
ful and distressed on account of the death of 
his dear and dutiful son, who by the advice and 
wish of his parents, and other good people, had 
travelled to Italy, and at Bologne, on the evening 
of the 9th of 06lober, had died, with a beautiful, 
glorious Christian confession of faith. 

But his parents, besides their natural love and 
tenderness, distressed and tortured themselves 
as if they had been the cause of his death, be- 
cause they had sent him thither. 

Thereupon said Dr. Martin : " If this were so, 
I am certainly as much a cause of this as you, 
for I faithfully counselled you and him to it. 
But we did not do it with the intention that he 
should die. Our hearts bear witness with us 
how far rather we would have had him living. 
Yea, you would indeed far rather have died 
yourselves, or lost everything you possess." 

Afterwards he turned to the father, who was 
weeping, and said : " Dear Master Lucas, let your 
heart be quieted. God wills to break your will, 
for He smites us where the pain is sorest, to 
crucify the old Adam. And even if our trials 
are not the greatest, to us they seem so. 

"Think of dear Adam, what heart-anguish his 
was when the first-born brother murdered the 

" Think of the beloved David, who mourned 


for Amnon and for Absalom, and Absalom was 
indeed lost. 

" Let us be comforted by the thought of 3^our 
son's goodness and dutifulness. For the world 
is so evil that the choicest youths come to 
shame, and your son might even have experi- 
enced this. 

" Grievous it is to you to have lost a good, 
obedient son. We cannot but remember the 
good and true more than the evil and disobe- 
dient ; yet let his obedience and his Christian 
departure be a joy to you. For his last hour 
was indeed good and blessed, and God chose 
when it should be. Ah, blessed, and twice bless- 
ed is he who has such a departure. It is my 
daily sigh and prayer that God may grant me 
a blessed, joyful departure. Then shall I see 
that all was well with me here, and, redeemed 
from all distress and sorrow, be joyful with God. 

*' Dear Master Lucas, commit this to God. 
He is the highest Father, and has more right 
to your son than even you have. For you are 
only his earthly father — have only trained and 
cherished him a little while. But God has given 
him body and soul, has guarded and kept him 
until now ; is a tenderer, yes, a far tenderer Fa- 
ther than you. He knows how, and He will 
preserve him, care for him, cherish him better 
than even you, on the whole, could do. Let your 
mourning and grief have measure ; commit it to 
the will of God, which is better than ours. Eat 


and drink and refresh yourself; do not make 
yourself ill with grief, for you shall yet serve and 
help many." 

To yustus yonas 


T KNOW his sorrow and mourn with him. 
^ But the time is coming in which thanks will 
be given to God, who has taken away His own, 
by so fatherly a stroke, and one suited to His 
Church, from the abysses and Tartaruses of this 
world. I can now rejoice that my most dear 
daughter Magdalene has been called out of this 
Ur of the Chaldees, feeling secure for her who 
now abides secure in eternal peace, although 
with great anguish I lost her. 

To Baumgartner s Wife 


OUR griefs have not risen so high nor grown 
so bitter as those of His dear Son and the 
dear mother of His Son. 

We have this glorious great advantage in our 
sorrows over the sorrow of the world, that God 
is gracious and favorable unto us, with all His 
angels and creatures, so that no misfortune to 
the body can hurt the soul, but must rather be 
for our profit. 

You suffer not alone, but have many, many 
faithful pious hearts who have great sympathy 


with you. Yea, truly, in great troops we visit 
dear Baumgartner in his prison ; that is, we visit 
the Lord Christ captive in this His faithful mem- 
ber, and pray and call on Him that He will 
deliver him, so that He may rejoin you and all 
of us. 

To Parents unknown on the Death of their 


SO also ye, when ye have mourned and wept 
as ye needs must, will once more comfort 
yourselves ; yea, thank God with joy, that your 
son has had so beautiful an end, and has so 
gently fallen asleep in Christ, that there can be 
no doubt he must be in the eternal rest of Christ, 
sleeping sweetly and softly. 

For every one wondered at the great grace 
which enabled him to continue steadfast to the end 
in prayer, and in the confession of Christ, which 
grace must be dearer to you than that he should 
have revelled a thousand years in all the wealth 
and honors of the world. He has taken with him 
the greatest treasure we can gain in this life. 

He has baffled the world and the devil ; but 
we must daily be baffled by them, and wander 
in the midst of perils, while he is safe. 

You have sent him to the best school ; and 
your love and cost are well repaid. God help us 
to follow. 

The Lord and highest Comforter Jesus Christ 


to whom your son is dearer than even to you ; 
who first met him with His Word, and then 
demanded him Himself, and took him from you, 
may He comfort and strengthen you by His 
grace, until the day when you shall see your son 
again in His eternal joy. 

To the Widow of George Schulze on the 
Death of her Husba^td- 


YET, although you must indeed have sorrow, 
the will of God is best of all. He has 
given His Son for us. How meet then is it that 
we should offer up our wills to His will and to 
His service and good pleasure, which not only 
are we bound to do, but therein shall we have 
great and eternal fruit and joy. 

IJart JTiftf). 





To the People of Wittenberg, A.D. 1521. 

CANNOT always be with you. Every 
one of us must die alone ; and in that 
greatest and last confli6t none of us 
can counsel or help another. I shall 
not be with you, nor you with me. He who 
stands steadfast then against sin, the devil, and 
hell, is saved. He who endures not is lost. 

But in that hour none will stand steadfast save 
those who have well learned the words of power 
and comfort against sin during life. What the 
soul has embraced of that comfort in the world, 
that she bears away with her. That, and nothing 
in the world besides. 

Against the devil and hell no one in that hour 
can stand, save he who has learned Christ by 


heart thoroughly ; so that he can defiantly, no- 
thing doubting, hold up against the devil how 
Christ died for him, and has vanquished Satan 
and hell. Then will he be saved, though all the 
devils are against him. 

The Fear of Death. 
" ^ I ^HE fear of death," he said, " is itself death, 

X and nothing else. He who has banished 
death from his heart tastes and feels no death." 

He was asked about the pains of death. 

"Ask my Kathe," he said, "if she felt anything 
of them, for she was indeed dead." 

She replied, " Herr Do6tor, I felt nothing." 

Then Do6lor Martin said, " Therefore I say that 
the fear of death is the greatest part of death. In 
the Hebrews it is written that 'He (the Lord 
Christ) tasted death for every man' We are happy 
people not to have to taste death. For the taste of 
death is bitter ! What kind of anguish it is to 
taste death may be seen indeed in Christ Him- 
self, when He says, 'My soul is exceeding sorrow- 
ful even unto death! In the garden it was that 
Christ died. For to taste death is to die." 

What do you think these words mean, "My 
soul is exceeding sorrowful even unto death ? " I 
hold them to be the greatest words in the whole 
Scriptures, although these also are indeed great, 
when He cried on the Cross, ''My God, my God ! 
why hast Thou forsaken me ? " No one can com- 
press this into words. No angel understands how 


great that agony was that pressed the bloody 
sweat from Him. 

That was the taste and terror of death, when 
a creature had to strengthen the Creator ! The 
Apostles understood nothing at all of it. 

''He who keeps my Saymg shall never taste 


FOR when he dies, life shall so lift itself up 
before him, that for this life which he sees 
he shall not be able to see death. 

For the night becomes clear light, and bright 
as day, because the light and the shining of that 
rising, dawning, new life, altogether quenches and 
shines away this dying and self-destroying 

DEATH, which is to men a penalty of sin, 
through the most tender and kind mercy 
of God becomes to Christian men an end of 
sin, and a beginning of life and righteous- 

For to him who already has righteousness and 
life, death becomes a minister of life — a loom 
wherein life is woven ; which surely we need not 
fear, since through no other passage can we reach 
that life. 

This is the might of faith. It mediates be- 
tween death and life, transmuting death into life 

and immortality. 



THEY threaten us with death. 
If they were as wise as they are unwise, 
they would threaten us with life. 

It is a contemptible, feeble threat to threaten 
Christ and His Christians with death, when they 
are lords and victors already over death. 

It is as if I were to threaten a man that I 
would bridle his horse for him, and set him to 
ride thereon. 

But they believe not that Christ is risen 
from the dead, and is Lord over life and death. 
To them He is still in the grave ; yea, still in 

But we know (and knowing this are bold and 
joyful), that He has risen, and that death is no- 
thing more than the end of sin and of itself 

Small Intwiatio7ts of Immortalily. 

HEREIN is indicated the soul's immortality, 
in that no creature save only man can un- 
derstand and measure the heavenly bodies. Ani- 
mals do not consider and analyze the water they 
drink. This upward contemplation of his indi- 
cates that man was not made to live always in 
this lower part of the world, but that hereafter 
he should possess the heavens. 

DEATH, in men, is in infinite and countless 
ways more mournful than in animals with- 
out reason. For man is a creature that was not 


created for this, but to live in obedience to the 
Divine Word, and in the Hkeness of God. Man 
was not created to die. 

DEAR brothers," said Dr. Martin Luther, 
'' despise the devil. For He who was 
nailed to the cross has crucified him ; so likewise 
if he crucifies us, we, on the other hand, shall 
crucify him, even with that cross wherewith he 
crucifies us." 

THANK God, the devil has never been able 
altogether to vanquish me ; he has burnt 
himself out on Christ. He says, " Be of good 
cheer, I have overcome the world ; the sting of 
death has been worn out and blunted on Me, yea, 
altogether broken." 

IN the year 1538, on the 21st of 06lober, Dr. 
Martin Luther made a public exhortation in 
the church, severely blaming those who were so 
fearful, and made such a clamor and cry about 
the Plague. 

" We should be of good cheer in the Lord ; and 
should trust Him," said he, " and each of us abide 
and walk in his own calling, and if our neigh- 
bors need our help and assistance, not desert 
them. We ought not to be so sore afraid of death ; 
for we have the Word of life, and we cleave to 
the Lord of life, who for our sake has overcome 


SINCE now He has been laid beneath this 
earth, and has been buried, henceforth the 
graves of all Christians become san6luaries, and 
wherever a Christian rests, there rests the sacred 
bodv of a Saint. 

The Damsel is not dead, but sleepeth. 

THIS place is very remarkable, that our 
Lord Himself calls death nothing else than 
sleep, which is a glorious consolation for all who 
believe. For Christ does not only say that the 
dead maiden sleeps ; He proves by fa6ls that she 
sleeps, in that He speaks to her with soft, gentle 
words, as to awaken her from sleep. 

This wisdom none of the world's wise men 
have reached ; endless questions they have rais- 
ed, but here all the questions are answered in one 
word, " She sleeps^ 

If she sleeps, where art thou, O Death } 
Death is no death to the Christian, but really 
a sleep. Yes, even the place where Christians 
are buried is called xotfAijTtjpiov^ that is, a sleeping- 

A MAN who lies asleep is much like one who 
is dead. Therefore the ancient sages said, 
" Sleep is the brother of Death." 

So also Death and Life are pi6lured and signi^ 
fied in the revolutions and transformations of 
day and night, and of all creatures. 


SLEEP is verily a death, and, equally, death is 
a sleep. Our death is nothing but a night's 

In sleep all weariness passes away, and we 
rise again in the morning joyous, fresh, and 

So at the last Day shall we arise from our 
graves as if we had only slept a night, be fresh 
and strong, bathe our eyes (as in morning dew), 
and all %veakness, corruption, and dishonor shall 
vanish from us forever. 

IF Cicero could nobly console himself and take 
courage against death, how much more 
should we Christians, who have a Lord who is 
the Destroyer of death, who has vanquished him, 
namely, Christ the Son of God, who is the Re- 
surre6lion and the Life. 

AND if we would fain live a little longer, what 
a little while it is at the longest ! Just as 
if several of us were journeying over the Diiben 
Heath to Leipzig, and some arrived at four 
o'clock, some at seven or eight, some at evening ; 
yet all had to be there before night. Thus our 
first forefather arrived a few hours before us. 
But even he will have rested no longer than 
one night, like ourselves. 


E must submit to death ; but the miracle 
is that whosoever keeps to God's Word 


shall not feel death, but pass hence as one falling 
asleep. No more should it be said of such an 
one, Morior, sed cogor dormire ; no more " I die," 
but, " I am constrained to sleep." 

I KNOW I shall not live long," he said ; " my 
brain is like a knife in which the steel is 
quite worn out, and there is nothing but iron left. 
The iron can cut no more. So it is with my 
brain. Now, Oh my dear Lord ! I hope, and am 
persuaded, that the hour of my departure is at 

" At Cobourg I used to go about and seek a 
place where they might bury me ; and I thought 
I could rest well in the Chapel, beneath the Cross. 
But now I am weaker than I was at Cobourg. 
God help me, and give me a gracious, blessed 
departure. I desire not to live any longer." 

ON the 22d of July, in the year 1533, Dr. 
Martin Luther said, at table, to Duke John 
Frederic, Ele6tor of Saxony, " It is a far more 
terrible thing when a prince dies than when a 
peasant dies, who is thought nothing of 

" A prince has to be abandoned of all his friends 
and nobles, and at last must enter into single 
combat with the devil. Then there will be no 
help in remembering that one has lived in a 
princely style." 


EATH for the sake of Christ's name and 
Word is held precious and glorious before 


God ; for we are mortal, and must die in one way 
or another, on account of sin. But if we can die 
for the sake of Christ's Word, and the free con- 
fession of it, we die a most honorable death ; we 
become altogether sacred ; we have sold our life 
dear enough. 

We who are Christians pray for peace and a 
long life ; not for our own sakes, for to such death 
is pure gain ; but for the sake of the Church and 
those who come after us. 

To all the dear Friends of Christ at Halle. 

(on the murder of the preacher GEORGE WINKLER, HY 

THEREFORE will I translate into writing 
the cry of his blood from the earth ; that 
this murder may never more be silent, until God, 
the merciful Father and just Judge, hear this cry, 
as He heard that of the blood of holy Abel, and 
execute justice and vengeance on the murderer 
and traitor, the old enemy who brought about 
the deed ; that the blood of Master George may 
be a Divine seed, and may bring forth fruit an 
hundred-fold ; so that instead of one murdered 
George, a hundred other true-hearted preachers 
may arise, who shall do Satan a thousand- fold 
more harm than this one man has done. And 
thus, because he would not endure to hear this 
one, he shall have to endure, hear, and see count- 
less numbers. As it happened to the Pope 


through the blood of Huss, whom he would not 
suffer to whisper in a corner, and is now con- 
strained to suffer to cry aloud throughout all the 
world, until Rome itself, and the whole world are 
become too narrow for this cry, and nevertheless 
there is no end to it. 

To Michael Stiefel^ 


UNHAPPY am I, so unequal to Leonhard. 
I a preacher of many words, he a mighty 
doer of the Word. Who will make me worthy, 
that, not with a double portion of his spirit, but 
with the half of it, I may vanquish Satan ? 

Pray for me. Christ grant that we be fol- 
lowers of Leonhard. Not king only is he de- 
servedly named, but Kaiser, who has vanquished 
him to whose power there is no equal on the 

Not a priest only is he, but a high-priest and 
true Pope, who has thus offered his body a sac- 
rifice to God, acceptable, living, holy. Well too 
he is named Leonhard ; that is, strength of a 
lion. Truly he was a lion, strong and fearless. 
All names with him have been fateful. He first 
of his family has consecrated and fulfilled the 
family name. 


HE handwriting of Luther which he gave 
to a messenger who asked for a certificate 


that he was alive ; for the Papists had shown 
great joy at the news of his death." 

I DOCTOR MARTIN, confess, in this my 
handwriting, that I am of one mind with the 
Devil, the Pope, and all my enemies ; for they 
would fain rejoice over my death ; and I, from 
my heart, would fain give them this joy, and 
would gladly have died at Smalkald. But God 
would not have it so that I should confirm this 
their joy. 

But one day He will do it ere they think, to 
my great gain ; and then they will say, " Alas, 
if Luther were still alive ! " 

THERE is no better death than that of St. 
Stephen, who says, " Lord, into Thy hands 
I commend my spirit," * To lay aside all the 
register of our sins and our merits, and to die 
on simple grace alone. 

St. Stephen learned this of two high persons, 
of the Lord Christ, and of David. 

* V. Page 27. 




(Q^ ^^ 


^ r^ 















Him sin is laid no more, but only 
righteousness ; no pain and sorrow- 

are in Him any more, but only joy ; 

no death but unmingled life, far, far 
fuller than this temporal life. This should make 
us joyful. For since the Lord Christ is now 
sitting yonder at the right hand of God, and 
possesses and rules not a kingdom of death, sor- 
row, and misery, but a kingdom of life, where 
dwell peace, joy, and redemption from all evil, so 
also it is certain that His own do not remain in 
death, anguish, terror, temptation, and suffering, 
but must be torn from death, and live with Him. 
" Because I live, ye shall live also!' 

IT is enough that we know we live when our 
body dies. But how we shall there live, we 
know not yet. For this life is hidden in God. 


" T T E IS THE God not of the dead, but of 
1 X THE LIVING." Therefore it is impossi- 
ble that the good should altogether die. They 
must live eternally ; otherwise God would not 
be their God. 

THE Scriptures say that the holy and just go 
into the unseen world, and there enjoy the 
most pleasant peace, and the sweetest rest. 
How they live there we indeed know not, nor 
what the place is where they dwell. But this 
we know assuredly, they are in no grief or pain, 
but rest in the grace of God. As in this life 
they were wont to fall softly asleep in the guard 
and keeping of God and of the dear angels, with- 
out fear of harm, though the devil might prowl 
around them, so after this life do they repose in 
the hand of God. 

WHEN my soul journeys forth I know that 
highest kings and princes are appointed 
to attend me, namely the dear angels themselves, 
who will receive me and guard me on my way. 

THE Father of all mercy has given us to 
believe not in a wooden, but in a living- 

And if Satan towers yet higher, and rages 
more fiercely, he shall not weary us out, unless 
he could tear down Christ from the right hand 
of God. 


While Christ sits there, we also shall remain 
lords and princes over sin, death, the devil, and 

Our cause is not yet sunk so low as it sank in 
Christ's own time, when Peter himself denied 
Him, and all the disciples fled from Him, and 
Judas betrayed Him. And if it fell as low as 
this, nevertheless, never should it fall to the 
ground, nor ever shall our Christ perish. 

THE world lifts itself up raging against 
Christ. Be it so. With this Man we 
choose to be trampled on, and with Him to rise. 
We shall see what they gain and we lose by this ; 
for He says, " Where I am, there also shall my 
serva7it be!^ 

THE enemy will have to let Christ stand ; 
and even if we die, we are not dead. If 
Christ can die, then shall I die. But I comfort 
myself with this. The Word of God abideth for- 
ever. " / live, and ye shall live alsoT 

Immortality in Name and in Truth. 

O INCE all men feel and recognize, yea see, 
O that we must die and pass away, every one 
seeks immortality here on earth, that he may be 
forever remembered. 

Great kings, princes, and lords sought it of 
old, by ere6ling marble obelisks, and high pyra- 
mids ; and now by building costly churches and 


palaces. Soldiers seek an eternal name through 
famous vi6lories ; learned men by writing books. 
But the endless, imperishable glory, and the 
eternity of God, men do not see. Ah ! we arc 
poor creatures. 

NATURAL life is a little fragment of the 
Eternal life. 



HIS life is life before our true birth to im- 

LL that God creates. He creates for life. 
He has delight in life. 

HE said once, " When he lay a babe on his 
mother's breast he knew little how he 
would afterwards be nourished, or what his future 
life would be." Still less do we understand what 
the eternal life will be. We are like infants here. 

HERE on earth it is ever imperfe6l. We 
cannot here acknowledge and grasp our 
true treasure as we would. He has indeed begun 
in us, and will not give up the work, but if we 
continue in faith and are not impatient. He will 
bring us to the true, eternal good things and 
perfect gifts, where we shall never wander, stum- 
ble, be angry, or sin any more. 


WE know not how our Lord God is carry- 
ing on His building. Here we see only 
the scaffolding, with its beams and boards. 

But in that life we shall see God's buildins: 
and house ; and then we shall wonder, and shall 
indeed rejoice that we have endured temptation. 

AS there is a difference among the stars, so 
will there be among the Saints after this 
life, in the eternal life. As St. Augustine says, 
" God crowns His gifts in man." 

WE do not believe that God will give us 
better things than those which He lavish- 
es on the godless in this world ; namely, better 
things than money, lands, honor, and power. 

The supreme good, indeed, He withholds from 
them, because they desire it not ; namely. Him- 

But he who has not God, let him have what 
he will besides, is poorer and more miserable be- 
fore God than Lazarus, who lay at the rich man's 
gate, and died of hunger there. 

If indeed the rich, patient God lavishes such 
temporal good things, yea, even dominions and 
kingdoms, on His bitter foes and blasphemers, 
what has He not prepared for us His children 
who suffer for His sake } Nay, what has He not 
given } His Only Begotten Son, and with Him 
all things : that we in Him should be children of 


God, heirs and fellow-heirs, through hope, of 
eternal heavenly treasures. 

" T HAVE been suffering from sore sickness, 
X so that I gave up my life to God ; but many 
a thought have I had in my weakness. Oh ! 
how I thought of what eternal life is, what joys it 
has ! Although I am sure that it is already given 
us through Christ, and prepared for us, because 
we believe ; yet, it is there that it will be mani- 
fested what the new creation shall be. Whilst 
we remain here .below, we cannot attain to un- 
derstanding the first creation. 

" If I had been with God before He created the 
world, I could have given Him no counsel how 
to create the round worlds and the firmament 
from nothing, and to jewel it with the Sun, en- 
lightening all the earth in its swift course ; or 
how to create man and woman. All this He did, 
and none was His counsellor or taught Him. 
Surely therefore I may joyfully trust Him and 
give Him glory for the future life, and the new 
creation, how all shall be in these, and be con- 
tent that He alone be the Creator." 

I THINK often about it," said Dr. Martin, 
" but I cannot understand how we shall 
spend our tim . in that eternal life ; no change, 
no eating and drinking, no labor, nothing to do. 
I deem, however, that we shall have countless 
objects to contemplate." 


Thereon Philip Melanchthon said very softly : 
" Lord, show tis the Father and it sufficeth us" 
That will be the glorious obje6l for us to contem- 
plate. With that we shall have enough to do. 

IN the life to come," Dr. Martin said, " we 
shall not see darkly, as we now do ; but we 
shall see face to face ; that is to say, there shall 
be a most glorious brightness of the Eternal 
Majesty, in which we shall see God, even as He 
is. There shall be a true and perfe6l knov*^ledge 
and love of God, a perfe6l light of reason, and a 
perfe6l will, an heavenly, Divine, and eternal 

THIS far passeth all man's capacity, that God 
should call us heirs, not of some rich and 
mighty prince, not of the Emperor, not of the 
world, but of God, the Almighty Creator of all 
things. If a man could comprehend the great 
excellency of this, that he is indeed the son and 
the heir of God, and with a constant faith believe 
the same, he wo'dd contemn all the pomp and 
glory of the world in comparison of the eternal 
inheritance. He would do all things with great 
numility, and suffer all with great patience. 

Furthermore, he would earnestly desire, with 
Paul, to depart and be with Christ ; and nothing 
could be more welcome to him than speedy death, 
which he would embrace as a most joyful enter- 
ing into peace, knowing that it would be the 


end of all his miseries, and that through it he 
should attain to his true inheritance. 

Yea, a man that could perfedlly believe this, 
would not long remain alive, but would be swal- 
lowed up at once with exceeding joy. 

I BELIEVE that in that future life we shall 
need no occupation but to contemplate with 
wondering joy the Creator and His creatures. 

AGAIN in his sickness, in the year 1538, he 
said many beautiful things about the future 
life, and of its "unutterable joy, which human 
reason cannot comprehend with all her specula- 
tion and meditation, since we cannot with our 
thoughts escape from the visible and corporeal. 
The eternal can be comprehended in no human 
creature's heart. Work itself will be delii^ht 
there. Rapture will be work. What that joy 
will be we cannot conceive." 

THERE we shall ever be studying, and 
learning more of what there is in the In- 
carnation of the Son of God. We can never 
learn that mystery through. Yes, this will be 
the Eternal life, the life of the angels, ever 
searching and learning more and more ; ever 
seeing something new that we have not seen 


OT to leave us here on this earth with 
its troubles and sorrows, its poor wants 



and pleasures, did Christ come from heaven, 
die on the Cross, and rise again ; still less 
to leave us in the dust and corruption of the 
grave ; but to bring us to another life, where we 
shall need no more to eat and drink and toil ; 
shall never more sufft^r, be sorrowful, or die. 



Manifestation of Christ, 

OW that Christ has risen again He 
has drawn all with Him, so that all 
men must rise, even the ungodly. 
But that we still live here and use 
this world is just as if a father were to take a 
journey into a foreign country, and were to say 
to his child or servant, " See, there thou hast two 
golden groschen ; use them for the necessities 
and nourishment of thy body until I come again." 
Moreover all creatures are a figure and type 
of the future Resurre6lion, for towards the spring 
they come forth again living from death, grow 
and become green, which in winter no one would 
believe could be, who had not before proved and 
seen it. 


Similarly, now that He has ascended to heaven 
He has taken all with Him thither. He sitteth 
on the right hand of God and has translated us 
who are members of His body with Him into 
the heavenly existence, that we also, like Christ, 
may be lords over all things ; whilst yet He 
remains the First-born among many brethren. 

Therefore, a Christian who believes this looks 
at the sun, and all that we use here in this world, 
as if they were not, but ever thinks of the future 
life, in which he already lives, although it doth 
not yet appear. The whole creation also waiteth 
for the manifestation of the sons of God. 

CHRIST has made us free, not civilly and 
carnally, but divinely. The most high and 
sovereign Majesty doth not only defend and suc- 
cor us in this life, but as touching our bodies 
also, will deliver us, so that our bodies, which are 
sown in corruption and dishonor and weakness, 
shall rise again in incorruption, glory, and power. 

Death, which is the most mighty and dreadful 
thing in all the world, is utterly vanquished in 
the conscience by this liberty of the Spirit. 

Wherefore the majesty of this Christian liberty 
is highly to be esteemed and diligently con- 

IN the year 1539, on the nth of April, _Do6lor 
Martin Luther was in his garden, and with 
many a deep thought, he looked at the trees — 


how fair and lovely they were, budding and blos- 
soming and growing green ; he said, '' Praised be 
God the Creator, who in the spring-time out of 
dead creatures makes all living again. Look at 
the little twigs," he said, " so sweet and full ; 
pregnant with new life. There we have a beau- 
tiful image of the Resurrection of the dead. The 
winter is death ; the summer is the Resurreftion of 
the dead, for then all live again and grow green." 

OUR Lord has written the promise of the 
Resurre6lion, not in books alone, but in 
every leaf in spring-time. 

WHILE Adam (the old man) lives ; that is, 
while he sins, life is swallowed up of death. 
But when Christ dies, death is swallowed up of 
Life, that is, of Christ Himself 

IN the year 1544, on the Sunday Cantate, after 
Easter, Dr. Martin made a very beautiful 
sermon in the Church on the Resurre6lion of the 
dead, from the Epistle. He dwelt on these words : 
" Thoicfooly that which thou sowest is not quickened 
except it die!' He spoke first of the Resurrection 
of Christ, " which," said he, " every day becomes 
more complete, as one by one we follow Him. 
For we must ever bind and link together the 
Resurre(5lion of Christ and our own. For He is 
our Head." 


WHEN we shall live in that Day we shall 
look with wonder on one another, and 
say, " Shame ! that we were not of better cheer, 
braver and stronger, and more joyful to trust 
Christ, and to endure the Cross, and all tribula- 
tions and persecutions, since this glory is so 

THIS corrupt and feeble body cannot con- 
tinue as it is. Therefore it is best that the 
Potter should take the vessel, break it in pieces, 
make it mere clay again, and then make it al- 
together new. 

SHALL rise again," said Dr. Martin, "and 
once more be able to converse with you. 
This finger, on which this ring is, I shall have 
again. All must be restored. For it is written, 
* God will create new heavens and a new earth 
wherein dwelleth righteousness.' That will be 
no empty nor idle kingdom. There will be pure 
joy and rapture ; for those heavens and that 
earth will be no dry, barren sand. 

"When a man is happy, a green tree, a fair 
flower, or nosegay can make him glad ; but 
when he is sad he can scarcely bear to look at the 
trees, or at anything beautiful. 

" Heaven and earth shall be renewed, and we 
who believe shall be all together, one company. 

" If we were all one here on earth there would 
be great peace ; but God makes it otherwise, and 


suffers this world to be so strangely entangled 
and confused that we may long and sigh for the 
future Fatherland, and be weary of this toilsome 

WHEN Christ shall cause the trumpet to 
peal at the last Day, then all will spring 
forth and arise ; as the flies who lie dead (dor- 
mant) in- winter, but towards summer, when the 
sun shines, start to life again ; as the birds, who 
lie dead (dormant) all the winter in nests, or in 
clefts of the rocks and trees, or under the hol- 
low banks of streams, as the cuckoo, the swal- 
low, and others, and towards spring come to life 
again. Experience teaches us to expecl this. 

ONCE, when Dr. Martin and others had been 
discoursing merrily together, they came at 
length to earnest converse about eternal life ; 
" how the heavens and the earth would be made 
new." In Christ we already possess the new fu- 
ture and eternal life. Then will the flowers, leaves, 
and grass be as fair, pleasant, and glorious as 
an emerald, and all creatures be at their fairest. 

Even now, when we have God's grace shining 
on us, all the creatures smile on us. 

And in the new heavens there will be a great, 
eternal light and beauty. What here we would 
be, there we shall be. Wherever thought takes 
us, thither the body also will be able to follow. 

In this life the body is obedient to the will. 


Much more in the future Ufe shall the body be 
able easily to obey the will. All shall be restored 
us there, but shining, bright, glorious. And all 
which here we count fair will be as nothing, by 
comparison, there. We shall be satisfied with 
God's grace, and be altogether what we would 
be. There shall be all that we would so fain 
have here, namely : justice, peace, joy, blessed- 
ness, and we shall be free from all sickness and 
every evil chance. 

To a heart that is full of joy, all it sees is 
joyful ; but to a sad heart all is sad. Change of 
heart is the greatest change. 

All that we lost in Paradise we shall receive 
again far better, and far more abundantly. The 
new heavens and earth, each shall be full of 
the life which belongs to each. 

N' OT only in heaven shall we be, but where- 
soever we will in heaven or earth ; no 
more tottering under this heavy body, which ever 
drags us earthward. The body itself shall then 
be full of a6livity and life. 

IT is a great thing to believe that then the 
weak and burdensome body shall be so vigor- 
ous, and swift, and full of life and a6livity. I be- 
lieve this but feebly ; the world not at all. 

If here we have such pleasure in the creatures, 
in the sun, the stars, and all the creation, what 


will it be there, where we shall see God face to 
face ? 

There the Saints shall keep eternal Holy Day, 
ever joyful, secure, and free from all suffering ; 
ever satisfied in God. 

This body is a Sepidchre. 

SLEEP is nothing else than a death, and 
death a sleep. What is our death but a 
night's sleep t For as, through sleep all weari- 
ness and faintness pass away and cease, and the 
powers of the spirit come back again, so that in 
the morning we arise fresh, and strong, and joy- 
ous ; so at the Last Day we shall rise again, as 
if we had only slept a night, and shall be fresh 
and strong. 

Wonder of the Saints at the Joy of Heaven, 

THOSE who in their necessity and anguish 
could comfort themselves no otherwise 
than because they had Christ the Son of God 
as their Saviour and their Advocate with the 
Father, by keeping close to His Word, and by 
a heartfelt yearning and longing for His blessed 
appearing, — those shall then look with wonder 
on one another. We shall recognize one another 
and say, " Lo ! verily, do we meet again thus .? 
Who would have foreseen this wonderful, blessed 
transformation t On earth we were the most mis- 
erable, the least esteemed, and sorely tried ; were 



called heretics and those who turned the world 
upside down, were scorned and mocked, trampled 
under foot, hunted down, cast into dungeons, 
slain by torture, sword, and fire. We bore the 
cross a little while, yea, but for a rnoment, com- 
pared with this great glory which is now re- 
vealed in us ; and now behold, we live with 
Christ in unspeakable eternal joy, and praise 
Him, the Father and the Holy Spirit with all 
the angels and saints." 

" T F we rightly considered," said Do6lor Mar- 
X tin, " how great the glory of the future life 
will be, for which we wait, when we shall rise 
again from the dead, we should not be so heavy- 
hearted and unwilling to suffer all kinds of trials, 
torments, and wrong from this evil world. 

" When the Son of Man, our dear Lord Christ, 
shall come at the Last Day to judge the quick 
and the dead, and His sentence falls on the 
godly and on the ungodly, then we shall be 
ashamed at heart, and each say to himself, 
' Shame on thee ! Had I indeed believed God's 
word, I would have suffered gladly not only sore 
temptation, and unjust imprisonment, but would 
willingly have been trampled under the feet of 
all the Turks and the ungodly, and have lain 
there, for the sake of the coming glory which 
now I see revealed.' " 

GO into the garden and ask the cherry-tree 
how it is possible that from a dry, dead 


twig can spring a little, living eye, and from 
that eye can spring cherries ? Go into the 
house and ask the matron how it is possible that 
from the lifeless &^g can come the living bird ? 

And since God docs such wonders with cher- 
ries and with eggs, canst thou not give Him the 
glory of believing that if He suffers the winter to 
come over thee, if He suffers thee to die and be 
imprisoned in the earth, thee also, when His 
summer comes, will He bring forth again and 
awaken from the dead ? 

Christ calling all by Name to Him. 

MY Lord is called " Sit thou at My right 
Jimid!' He saith " I will raise you up 
again at the last day." And then He will also 
say, " Do6lor Martin, Do6lor Jonas, Master Mi- 
chael Coeli, come hither! " He will call us all by 
name. Forward then : fear not. 

The Advent {as he believed) near, 

THE light of the Gospel in our times is a 
sure sign of the glorious Advent of the 
Lord Christ. It is like the rose of dawn pre- 
ceding the Eternal Day, and the rising of the 
Sun of Righteousness. 

THE prophets threw the Advents of Christ 
together ; as now we know that the Last Day 
will come, yet cannot know what or how things 


will be after it, except only in general that there 
will be eternal joy, peace and blessedness. So 
the prophets held that immediately after the com- 
ing of Christ, the Last Day would come. They 
have also thrown together the signs of the First 
and Second Advent, as if both would happen at 
one time. 

So also in the Epistle to the Corinthians St. 
Paul questions whether the Day of Judgment 
will soon come, while those then at Corinth still 
lived. And even Christ Himself did the same, 
placing the signs of both close together. 

OCTOR MARTIN said, " Oh, my God, 
come at last ! I am ever waiting for that 
Day, early in the spring, when day and night are 
equal, and there will be a bright clear dawning. 
These are my thoughts. Quickly from this rosy 
morning sky, a black, thick cloud will arise, and 
three flashes of lightning, then a peal of thun- 
der, and in a moment (a ' now '), in the twinkling 
of an eye, the heavens and the earth will collapse, 
smitten into an indistinguishable mass. Praise 
God who has taught us not to dread, but to sigh 
and long for that Day. Under the Papacy all 
the world dreaded it : * Dies irae, dies ilia.' " 

STIEFEL said once, " As I was on the way 
hither, I saw a glorious rainbow, and I thought 
of the Last Day." " Nay, it will not come ushered 
in by rainbows," said Dr. Martin, " but with a sud- 


den crash ; with fire, thunder and lightning, the 
whole creation shall pass away. In a moment 
we shall all be changed. A mighty trumpet- 
peal will awaken and renew us all. It will not 
be the soft sighing of a lute that shall awaken 
all that are in the graves to hear." 

AFAR different pomp from the pomp of the 
triumphal entry of kings and emperors, 
will that Advent have. For the whole air shall 
be full of angels and of saints, who shall shine 
brighter than the sun. 

AT Easter-tide, in April, when there was 
least fear of rain, Pharaoh perished in the 
Red Sea and Israel was led out of Egypt. 

At the same season the world was created. 
At that season the year changes ; and then 
Christ arose again and renewed the world. 

So, perhaps, at the same season will dawn the 
Last Day. I have a thought that this Day will 
come about Easter-tide, when the year is pleas- 
antest and most fair ; and early, when the sun 
ariseth, as with Sodom and Gomorrha. 

The heavens will become troubled, and there 
will be thunders and earthquakes, perhaps for 
an hour or longer. Then the people who see it 
will say, " See ! see ! you foolish creature ! Did 
you never hear thunder before ? " 

And suddenly the whole world will fall together, 
and many a debt will remain unpaid. 


Y these fires in the sky I judge the Last 
Day to be at the doors. The empire is 
falling, kings are falling, priests are falling, the 
whole world everywhere is falling, even as a 
great house, when about to fall, is wont first to 
begin its ruin with little cracks. 

His Prayer for the Speedy Advent of Christ. 

ELP, O Lord my God, that the joyful 
Day of Thy Holy Advent may come, 
that we may be redeemed from this evil, envious 
world, the Devil's kingdom, and be set free from 
the bitter torments that we have to suffer both 
from without and from within, both from wicked 
men and from our own conscience. Destroy this 
old Adam, that we may be clothed with another 
body that is not disposed to evil and excess as 
this is, but which, redeemed from all infirmity, 
shall be made Uke unto Thy glorious body, my 
Lord Jesus Christ, so that at last we may attain 
our full and glorious redemption. 

Luther s last ConfUH: and ViHory. 

ON Wednesday the 17th of February, 1543, it 
was observed that he was feeble and ailing. 
The Princes of Anhalt and the Count Albert 
Mansfeld, with Dr. Jonas and his other friends, 
entreated him to rest in his own room during the 
morning. He was not easily persuaded to spare 
himself, and probably would not have yielded 


then, had he not felt that the work of reconcilia- 
tion was accomplished, in all save a few supple- 
mentary details. Much of the forenoon, there- 
fore, he reposed on a leathern couch in his room, 
occasionally rising, with the restlessness of ill- 
ness, and pacing the room or standing in the 
window praying, so that Dr. Jonas and Coelius, 
who were in another part of the room, could hear 
him. He dined, however, at noon, in the Great 
Hall, with those assembled there. At dinner he 
said to some near him, " If I can, indeed, recon- 
cile the rulers of my birthplace with each other, 
and then, with God's permission, accomplish the 
journey back to Wittemberg, I would go home 
and lay myself down to sleep in my grave, and 
let the worms devour my body." 

IN the afternoon he complained of painful 
pressure on the breast, and requested that it 
might be rubbed with warm cloths. This reliev- 
ed him a little ; and he went to supper again 
with his friends in the Great Hall. At table he 
spoke much of eternity, and said he believed his 
own death was near ; yet his conversation was 
not only cheerful, but at times gay, although it 
related chiefly to the future world. One near him 
asked whether departed saints would recognize 
each other in heaven. He said, yes, he thought 
they would. 


HEN he left the supper-table he went to 
his room. In the night his two sons, 


Paul and Martin, thirteen and fourteen years of 
age, sat up to watch with Justus Jonas, whose 
joys and sorrows he had shared through so many 
years. CoeUus and Aurifaber also were with 
him. The pain in the breast returned, and again 
they tried rubbing him with hot cloths. Count 
Albert came and the Countess, with two physi- 
cians, and brought him some shavings from the 
tusk of a sea-unicorn, deemed a sovereign reme- 
dy. He took it, and slept till ten. Then he 
awoke, and attempted once more to pace the 
room a little ; but he could not and returned to 
bed. Then he slept again till one. During those 
two or three hours of sleep, his host Albrecht, 
with his wife, Ambrose, Jonas, and Luther's son, 
watched noiselessly beside him, quietly keeping 
up the fire. Everything depended on how long 
he slept, and how he woke. 

The first words he spoke when he woke 
sent a shudder of apprehension through their 

He complained of cold, and asked them to 
pile up more fire. Alas ! the chill was creep- 
ing over him which no effort of man could re- 

Dr. Jonas asked him if he felt very weak. 
" Oh," he replied, " how I suffer ! My dear Jonas, 
I think I shall die here, at Eisleben, where I was 
born and baptized. 

His other friends were awakened and brought 
in to his bedside. 


JONAS spoke of the sweat on his brow as a 
hopeful sign, but Dr. Luther answered : 
" It is the cold sweat of death. I must yield 
up my spirit, for my sickness increaseth." 

Then he prayed fervently, saying : 

" Heavenly Father, everlasting and merciful 
God, Thou hast revealed to me Thy dear Son, 
our Lord Jesus Christ. Him have I taught ; 
Him have I experienced ; Him have I con- 
fessed ; Him I adore and love as my beloved 
Saviour, Sacrifice, and Redeemer — Him whom 
the godless persecute, dishonor, and reproach. 
O heavenly Father, though I must resign my 
body, and be borne away from this life, I know 
that I shall be with Him forever. Take my 
poor soul up to Thee." 

Afterwards he took a little medicine, and 
assuring his friends that he was dying, said three 
times : 

" Father, into Thy hands do I commend my 
spirit. Thou has redeemed me, Thou faithful 
God. Truly God hath so loved the world ! " 

Then he lay quite quiet and motionless. Those 
around sought to rouse him, and began to rub 
his chest and limbs, and spoke to him, but he 
made no reply. Then Jonas and Coelius, for 
the solace of the many who had received the 
truth from his lips, spoke aloud, and said : 


"Venerable father, do you die trusting in 
Christ, and in the do6lrine you have constantly 
preached ? " 

He answered by an audible and joyful "Yes." 

That was his last word on earth. Then turn- 
ing on his right side, he seemed to fall peaceably 
asleep for a quarter of an hour. Once more 
hope awoke in the hearts of his children and his 
friends ; but the physician told them it was no 
favorable symptom. 

A light was brought near his face ; a death- 
like paleness was creeping over it, and his hands 
and feet were becoming cold. 

Gently once more he sighed ; and with hands 
folded on his breast, yielded up his spirit to God 
without a struggle. 

This was at four o'clock in the morning of the 
1 8th of February, 1543. 

2 M. IV. Dodds Catalogue. 

FAMILY. I vol., 121110 $1 50 

Fine edition. Crown 8vo, tinted paper .... 2 00 

Cabinet edition, i6mo, tinted paper i 50 

Sunday-school edition, i8mo, illustrated .... i 00 

Those familiar with the life of Luther will remember Dame Ursula 
Cotta, in Eisenach, who, when he was a lad singing from door to 
door to support him at school, took him to her house and ever after 
befriended him. The author of this book, for the purpose of repro- 
ducing in a more familiar form the social life, the religion, and some 
of the chief historical events and personages of that momentous 
period, finds in the above fad^ a suggestion on which to improve. 
The authoress manages her ingenious plot in the most skilful manner. 
One can scarcely persuade himself that these are not genuine docu- 
ments fished out of some old Lutheran family chest 

" It is intensely interesting, and will be a great favorite with tlie public. It is 
eminently one of tlie star books of the season." — ^. 3". Times. 

"A book of unusual attracflion and merit, where the interest never flags, and every 
page is full of gems. The work might justly be termed ' A Romance of the Refor- 
mation.* The various incidents in the life of Luther are portrayed with a graphic 
beauty and truthfulness rarely equalled." * * * 

" It is seldom a book appears which, like this, has attradlions for all classes of 
readers. The lovers of fidlion and the lovers of history, the practical and the sen- 
timental, the youthful, and those more advanced, are charmed by it, and its gentle 
catholic spirit will render it equally attractive to the Protestant and Romanist." — 
Albany Times. 

" In-this work we seem almost to meet the great men of the Reformation face to 
face, and to be actually present in the thrilHng scenes in which they participated." — 

" The family history which it contains, if read by itself, would be regarded as one 
of the most successful portraitures of domestic life that has ever been drawn, each 
charadler being delineated and preserved with striking distindlness, and some of 
the characflers being such as the reader will love to linger over as he would over 
some beautiful portrait drawn by a master's pencil." — AVw }'ori Obsemcr. 

" The story from first to last is remarkable for its artlessness and tendemcw, and 
it chains the reader's attention to the close." — Am. TItso. Review. 

" The prominent scenes, from the time of Huss to the death of Luther, are 
painted before us, and we read them with such interest as even D'Aubign6 can 
scarcely create. The book has all the fascination of a romance." — Evangeliccu 

M. W. Bond's CatalooriLe. 



By the Author of "The Schonberg-Cotta Family." 
'HE EARLY DAWN ; or, Sketches of Christian 
-L Life in England in the Olden Time. By the 
author of the Schonberg-Cotta Family. With Introdu6tion 

by Prof. H. B. Smith, D.D. i2mo $i 50 

Fine edition. Crown 8vo, tinted paper .... 2 00 

Cabinet edition, 16 mo, tinted paper i 5° 

Sunday-school edition, 18 mo, illustrated ... i 00 

The Christian Life of England in the Olden Time is here depidled, 
through several centuries, from its earliest dawn, in its contrasted 
lights and shadows, down to " the morning star of the Reformation." 
The Druid is first introduced in converse with the Jew and the Chris- 
tian. The Two Martyrs of Verulam fall within the period of the 
Roman domination, full fifteen hundred years ago. The fortunes of 
an Anglo-Saxon Family are briefly sketched through three genera- 
tions. The contests of the Saxon and the Norman, and their different 
traits, are vividly portrayed, in the time of the Crusades. And few 
tales are more interesting and instruftive than that in which Cuthbert 
narrates his experience in the Order of St. Francis and his illumina- 
tion by the " Everlasting Gospel " of Joachim, and Cicely relates 
how Dr. Wycliffe, of Oxford, ministered to her spiritual needs and 

" The undeniable charm of these sketches consists in their simple, truthful adhe- 
rence to the spirit and traits of these olden times. The author has been a diligent 
student of the literature, and through the literature, of the very life of the epochs. 
This is revealed in many skilful touches of art, in incidental allusions, apt citations, 
and graphic descriptions of scenes and persons. But more than this is her rare gift 
of tracing the workings of the human soul in its needs and aspirations, its. human 
love, its divine longings. The permanent religious wants, which remain the same 
under all varieties of external fortune, are so truthfully set forth that the Past be- 
comes a mirror for the Present." — Dr. Smith'' s Introduction. 

" The various fadls and legends of Christianity are told in this book in a style of 
romantic fascination. It is an unusually entertaining and readable work." — Neib 
York Evening Post. 

"The author carries us back into the midst of events and scenes, wakes up (he 
dead a6lors and makes them live again, and we see not the history, but the living 
men that made the history." — Evangelical Repository. 

" We do not know where to look for a book that combines such beauty of style 
E jch charming simplicity and variety of expression, with such sweetness of spirit 
It is full of beauty, and everywhere pervaded with a loving, catholic spirit." — Hari' 
ford Press. 


M. W. DodcTs Catalos^ue. 

By the Author of "The Schonberg-Cotta Fami /.' 

OF THE Times of Whitefield and the Weslevs. 
By the author of the Schonberg-Cotta Family. With a 
Preface by the author for our edition. I2m( . $i 50 

Fine edition, crown 8vo, tinted paper 2 00 

Cabinet edition, i6mo, tinted paper i 50 

Sunday-school edition, iSmo, illustrated . . . i 00 

Tlie diary begins in 1745 and gives us a charming pi(5ture of rura) 
life and simplicity in Cornwall. At the date the story opens the 
" mischievous fanatics," Whitefield and Wesley, begin to disturb the 
parish with their plain preaching. Kitty very soon goes up to Lon- 
don to pay a visit to the family of her uncle, who is a dissenter, and 
there she meets those reformers, who are turning the kingdom upside 
down with their new do6trines. The main interest of the book is 
religious, yet the state of the country at that time, the habits of so- 
ciety, the dangers of travelling, and the faithful pictures of the dress 
and manners of that age will interest all who are not attracted by the 
graver matters of the story. 

" Notwithstanding the immense popularity of the SchiJnberg Cotta Chronicle, we 
should not be surprised if Mrs. Kitty Trevylyan completely rivals them in popular 
favor. All the good qualities that gained so much success for the writer's previous 
books are found in this, while the subject undoubtedly offers superior advantages to 
those where the scene is laid in remote times or in a foreign land. The family group 
in the old homestead, on the storm-vexed shores of Cornwall, becomes, from the 
author's skiltui painting, and fine perception of charadler, a reality from henceforth to 
lier readers ; and when the heroine leaves it to gain the glimpses of the great world 
that form the historical portion of the book, she carries with her the good wishes of 
all."— -V. Y. Times. 

"The beauty of the 'Diary' is its homelike simplicity, its delicate portraits, and 
powerful, because so perfectly natural, sketches of life and mTinners." — //arf/ord 

" The book is redolent with religious feeling, fresh, pure, and sensible ; it abounds 
in kind but keen thrusts at the follies and mistakes of conventional piety ; it pushes 
aside human creeds that fetter and conceal the Bible's plain, clear pages ; and it is 
quite remarkable for its nice detection of the starting-points of error, the places where 
divine doctrines have been spliced with human ones." — Vermont Record. 

" VVe think this decidedly the author's best work, better even than the ' Cotta 
Family.' It sparkles on aln.ost every page with gems of thought, while the t irrative 
is one of absorbing interest." — 5". 5". Times. 

M. W. Dodd's Catalogue. 5 

By the Author of "The Schonberg-Cotta Family.*' 

WINIFRED BERTRAM ; and The World she 
Lived in. By the author of the Schonberg-Cotta 

Family, i vol. i2mo %'^ IS 

Fine edition, crown 8vo, tinted paper 2 50 

Cabinet edition, i6mo, tinted paper i 75 

Sunday-school edition, i8mo, illustrated .... i 00 

Unlike the author's previous works, it is not historical, but a story 
of modern life, with its scene laid in the heart of London. Winifred 
is a bright child, who very early in a naive way begins to be blase, 
having nothing to do but gratify her own childish desires. The lesson 
of the book is that one can only live happily and profitably by sym- 
pathy with others, and in exertion to benefit others. The chara6lers 
are all ordinary and natural people, and the plot is without one sen- 
sational incident, but the author's genius for irradiating the common, 
her simple, pure spirit, her delicate humor, her faculty of seizing upon 
and representing charadler with fidelity, and the lovely spirit of mo- 
rality and religion, make the book a delightful one. The whole story 
is suffused with vivacity and grace. 

" George Elliot, whom we regard as the ^eatest female novelist of the age, never 
exceeded the terseness and epigrammatic force of expression of some passages in 

Winifred Bertram The allego.y of the expanding and contrading 

chamber is one of the most exquisite things in modern literature. '"■ — Rojitid Table. 

" A charming and quickenincr story, as we mi^lit anticipate from the author." — 
Congre Rationalist. 

" Delightful and charming are not properly descriptive of it, for while it is both, it 
is more than both ; it is of the kind of books tliac t ne cannot read without growing 
better." — Indianapolis State Journal. 

" It differs from its predecessors in that it is a storv of our own time, but it is like 
them in its felicitous portraiture of characfter, its life-likeness in narrative and i^a- 
logue, and its exquisite illustrations of precious gospel tru*^!!." — Christian Ti7ne^. 

" In her previous works it might have been supposed that some part of their suc- 
cess was due to the happy choice of her subjefts, or to the quaintness and novelty 
of the form in which they were presented. But here ther« ia no gentle illusion of 
the kind, and the effe6l is to place her clearly foremost amon^ th; liv-ng writers of 
religious stories. It is altogether the best and ablest book oi the accomplished 
author. ' ' — Sunday- School Times. 

" A succession of pi6lures of conversations, scenes, and comments, which shnw s 
wonderful measure of shrewd common sense and genuine knowledge o\ humai na 
ture.'" — Nat ion. tl Baptist. 

6 M. IV. D odd's Catalogue. 

By the Author of " The Schonberg-Cotta Family." 

Story of the Civil Wars. By the author of the Schon- 

berg-Cotta Family, i vol. i2mo $i 75 

Cabinet edition, i6mo, tinted paper i 75 

Sunday-school edition, iSmo, illustrated .... i 00 

This work, the opening scene of which is in New England, is asso- 
ciated with a period of English history in the 17th century, involving 
political and religious questions in which Americans are deeply in- 
terested. In its vivid and truthful impersonations of character, its 
great historic interest, its inimitable pictures of domestic life, min- 
gled throughout with an unaffected tone of religious sentiment, the 
author has fully equalled in this volume her Gotta Family, which has 
delighted so many thousands. 

" On the whole, we are inclined to assign to this a higher position and greater 
merit than to any of Mrs. Charles' works." — Independettt. 

"If this work had preceded in its publication the Schonberg-Cotta Family, we are 
not sure that it would not have rivalled it in popular favor." — Ne-w York Evangelist. 

"The quaint antique style of the volume gives it a strong flavor of those eventful 
times, while the ta<5t and fidelity with which the prominent historical circumstances 
are interwoven with the fi(5tltious incidents of the plot impart to it an air of natural- 
ness hardly inferior to that of a cotemporary chronicle. With a curious instin(5l she 
seizes upon the heart of different epochs, incorporating it in her descriptions with 
equal faithfulness to the truth of history and of human nature.'' — New York Tribune. 

" The volume starts with the first agitation of Protestantism as a political element 
in Great Britain, and proceeds through the civil wars that followed. The two fami- 
lies whose names aflford a title to the volume were on opposite sides of the great 
question of the day, and the story is well wrought out in the well-known style of the 
author. Since the Schonberg-Cotta Family, Mrs. Charles has written no book 
which compares so favorably with the former as Xhis."— Methodist Protestant. 

" It is a living book, full of tender sympathies, holy thoughts, and devout quick- 
eners, yet with sharp, clear-cut delineations of characfter. The roistering cavalier, 
the Christian reformer, and, more than all, the womanly women of the time, gather 
around us, and we know and love them." — Christian Register. 

" To the descendants of the Puritans and those who respedl their memory, this 
admirable volume will have a charm which even sympathy and interest rarely give." 
— .Veiv Haven Palladium. 

" All through the story there is evidence of that earnestness of feeling and refine- 
ment of thought that have given such a charm to this lady's writings, and have touched 
the popular heart so efiectively while instrucfting and elevating the reader's tastes 
and moral and religious aspirat'ons." — Roxl^ury Journal. 

M. W. Dodd's Catalocriie. 

t% • 

By the Author of "The Schonberg-Cotta Family." 

N BOTH SIDES OF THE SEA. A Story of the 
Commonwealth and Restoration. Being a Sequel to 
" The Draytons and the Davenants." By the author ot 
The Schcinberg-Cotta Family. ivol.i2mo . . . $i 75 

Cabinet edition i 75 

Sunday-school edition, i8mo . . i 00 

While this work is complete in itself, yet its historical value and 
interest are very much heightened by reading it in conne6lion with its 
companion volume, " The Draytons and the Davenants," where many 
of the leading chara61ers are first placed before the reader. These 
two families are in this volume, as in the preceding, made the warp of 
the story, into which is woven the history of a most eventful period. 
Opening with the tragic scenes of the execution of Charles I., we have 
presented in the highly dramatic style of the author — the establishment 
of the Commonwealth under Cromwell, its brilliant career, the death 
of the Protedor, the restoration of the Monarchy, and the forcible 
emigration to America of prominent a(?tors in its previous overthrow. 

" The house life, the public teaching, the political relations and partisanships of 
these times (1637 to 1691) are depicfled with consummate power and impressiveness 
in this volume and the Draytons and the Davenants, to which it is a sequel." — 
Brookly7t Gazette. 

" This work will be found to be a vivid reprodu6lion of the scenes of those stirring 
days, wliich more than any other in profane histoi-y have an interest for us, and which 
all Americans need to understand." — Christian Advocate. 

'• The scenes of the period to which this volume refers are depicted with consum- 
mate skill and rare beauty, and with such perfecft naturalness that the reader almost 
forgets that he is not in aftual conta<fl with the impressive realities." — Albaity 

" It has all the varied interests and the peculiar charm which attach to the author's 
ideal and yet historic narratives that are now so familiar to the reading world. No 
writer of the present day has more deservedly won a place in the hearts of all who 
love the truth, and who can appreciate that which is pure in sentiment and in domestic 
life." — New York Observer. 

" It blends histoiy with romance, and interweaves most charmingly lessons of the 
richest moral instrudllon and the deepest experiences of the Christian life." — 
National Baptist. 

" ' On Both Sides of the Sea ' has certainly a charming flavor of the quaint spirit 
of the time it describes, while as a story merely it is of exceeding interest." — New 
York Mail. 

1 1012 01060 5105 






V I ^m&^^